Matt Lowery – Cinematique Tones

1. Favourite knob/fader/switch on a piece of gear and why?

Easy- the filter cutoff knob on my Moog Subsequent 25. It’s huge, feels great, and what is does sonically is even better.

Moog Subsequent 25 Filter Knob

2. Do you have an ‘almost’ perfect bit of kit? What would you change?

The Vermona PerFOURMer is 99% perfect. I do sometimes wish I could store presets, but I understand why they kept everything completely manual. It’s inspiring to explore and dial in new sounds, but it would also be fantastic to be able to quickly find my way back to a sound I’ve already incorporated in a song (say, if I’m doing pickups in studio

Vermona PerFOURmer

3. What setup do you bring on holiday/tour/commute etc.?

My most fun, expressive mobile music tool is the norns. It can almost fit in your back pocket, but its scope is pretty limitless.

Monome Norns

4. What software do you wish was hardware and vice versa?

I’d sell a kidney to get Sean Costello’s Valhalla Vintage Verb into pedal form. I’d love to see some of Tom Majeski of Cooper FX’s code (particularly the Generation Loss) make its way to plugin land.

Cooper FX Generatioin Loss

5. Is there anything you regret selling… or regret buying?

Oof. This one hurts. When I was 17, I found an old keyboard looking thing in a closet at the local church my family attended. I messed around with it and dismissed it as some kind of work out garbage, and gave it to a friend. It was a Juno 60. That one pains me to this day.

[Editor: Damn!]

6. What gear has inspired you to produce the most music?

There are about 100 answers to this question, and the most honest answer I can give is “go check out my instagram”, because that’s where I document my adventures with inspiring gear. Lately, the most inspiring thing I’ve played is the Instruo Arbhar, which is this incredible musical granular processor. It’s really wonderful.

Instruo Arbhar

7. If you had to start over, what would you get first?

Wouldn’t change a thing! So the official answer is a Squier Stratocaster.

8. What’s the most annoying piece of gear you have, that you just can’t live without?

My tape decks. There’s always something to clean, maintain, or fix. But working with magnetic tape is something I don’t ever want to give up. The process itself helps me generate better ideas.

Tape Decks

9. Most surprising tip/trick/technique that you’ve discovered about a bit of kit?

Recently I found out I could trigger the gate on my Vongon Paragraphs pedal with midi note data, which lets me set up these super tight rhythmic filter opening sequences. Super cool.

Vongon Paragraphs

Artist or Band name?

Matt Lowery

Genre?

Ambient/Electronic

Selfie?

Where are you from?

Oklahoma City, OK, USA.

How did you get into music?

I picked up guitar when I was 12, and have been at it ever since!

What still drives you to make music?

Music and art are the ways that I process the world. I have to be making something meaningful all the time. When I stop making things, I start having trouble in every area of my life.

How do you most often start a new track?

I try to spend time with music every day. So I’ll usually stumble upon a sound, a vibe, or a progression by accident, and that will be the seed for a track. Sometimes it works out, often it doesn’t. That’s the fun!

How do you know when a track is finished?

When I enjoy it as much as I enjoy other people’s music, I try to just walk away. There’s always more you can do, so it’s more that I put it down, rather than saying it’s done.

Show us your current studio

That would require me to clean my current studio 😀

Best creative advice that you’ve ever heard?

Here’s the best advice I’ve ever read, period:

https://sivers.org/balance

[Editor: Spectacularly good advice! If you feel it applies to you? TLDR: Find a balance between income and art by separating the two]

Promote your latest thing… Go ahead, throw us a link.

You can hear my latest LP “Voyager” as well as my newest single “Nearer Now” at my Bandcamp page (mattlowery.bandcamp.com), as well as on all major streaming platforms.


Frank Pedersen – EuroCrack Soundscaper

1. Favourite knob/fader/switch on a piece of gear and why?

From eurorack modules, I really like the white knobs on Vermona and the keys on the NerdSeq is just fantastic. Both Modules have a good build quality. Also the patch cables from Instruo and Vermona I really enjoy using because they are great quality.

NerdSeq tracker sequencer in the center of the picture

2. Do you have an ‘almost’ perfect bit of kit? What would you change?

Well yes, but mostly no 😉 I primarily use eurorack, so there is always coming and going modules in my system, but that’s a big part of the fun in eurorack, at least for me. Last year I bought around 140 -150 modules and sold maybe around 100. I cleaned out a lot and tried getting rid of the modules that didn’t fit my workflow and purpose. I’m currently down to 1750 HP which I feel is a good size for my home studio. [Editor: May I, on behalf of all the readers, say ‘Woa!’]

FourMulator from Vermona

3. What setup do you bring on holiday/tour/commute etc.?

Holidays?? For Modular meet-ups I used to carry a medium and a large flightcase, plus a big backpack with cables, but it turned out I damaged my back by carrying this. So for the time being i’m down to a 60 HP case from 4MS. I think I will get the Intellijel Palette soon though. It seems to have a good size for a small backpack.

My first homemade flight cases. The small one was used for a Mother32 and a few modules

4. What software do you wish was hardware and vice versa?

Orca from Hundredrabbits. It can run on Monome Norns, but the display is small and it’s not eurorack. I would really like a dedicated hardware module with a large screen for that. I don’t wish for any modules to become software.

Orca from Hundredrabbits

5. Is there anything you regret selling… or regret buying?

Yeah a lot of things.. Roland TR8s was surprisingly awesome, and I regret selling it. (Did you know that you can multitrack record the channels on the TR8’s directly to your DAW with usb. It’s quite awesome, most synth boxes just pop up as a Stereo Master). Hermod and Pyramid from Squarp, OTO BAM, Orthogonal Devices ER-301. And of course all my 12 Amiga’s I had through time. I really wish I still had them all. Regrets from buying, sure, lots. There will always be many regrets when buying eurorack modules no matter how well you research modules. Period!

6. What gear has inspired you to produce the most music?

It’s kinda of weird, but I was fascinated by RF noise since I where a kid. For space sound textures I like the CW-upper sideband and CW-lower sideband the most. Running it thought various filters never disappoints me. Lately I’ve been “resynthesizing“ it through Panharmonium, and it can create some crazy wicked sounds, as well as nice random melodies.

Panharmonium from Rossum (picture taken the day I got it)

7. If you had to start over, what would you get first?

From standalone synths I would most likely buy Syntrx from Erica Synth and Tracker from Polyend. On eurorack modules I would start with what I know is good for me. NerdSeq, Trident, Panharmonium, and various standard modules. I have a long list in my head 🙂

Trident from Rossum

8. What’s the most annoying piece of gear you have, that you just can’t live without?

Besides the obvious; my computer. Then it is the Clouds and Rings. I currently don’t have either, but I have a Rings on the way again 🙂

Samsung 49” 32:9

9. Most surprising tip/trick/technique that you’ve discovered about a bit of kit?

I guess it is what I mentioned before. Any RF noise from an AM radio and the Panharmonium or just some nice filters. Wasp and Belgrad are great for this.


Artist or Band name?

Franksemi

Genre?

Interstellar soundscapes & ambient

Selfie?

Uffff.. but ok

Franksemi

Where are you from?

Denmark, Northern Jutland, Countryside. Raised by my Grandparents.

How did you get into music?

My uncle was teaching me how to play guitar every Sunday afternoon from when I was around 6 years old. But I lost interest in that after a while and somehow I also managed to break the guitar in half.. I don’t remember how and why, but I most certainly remember making up a cover story, so that my Grandparents would not get angry at me 😀 I can’t believe they fell for the story. I put the guitar back together as good as I could and placed it between some heavy wooden boxes so that it looked like the boxes had fallen and broken it… haha 🙂 Then I moved on to bass, and then tried drums for a bit. I also got tired from that pretty fast. Then when I was 13, the Amiga popped up and I was hooked on Protracker for some years. Later I got access to a 303 and borrowed a 606 for a while. Then it was mostly software for many years and next a 15 year break from making any music. Three years ago I split up with my x-girlfriend after many years together, and I needed to do something creative again, so I started building my first Eurorack flight case. And from there I started with Eurorack which was something I wanted to do for years.

My third homemade modular flight case

What still drives you to make music?

I don’t know if what I make is considered music, at least not in a traditional way. I would just categorize it as making space soundscapes & textures for my own personal meditative pleasure, and that is really what drives me. That and making something creative, which I have always done one way or another. I always imagine myself how I would enjoy these sounds while leaving this solarsystem in a spaceship. Plainly put; sounds for space travel. But I also think of it as kind of alien communication that I am still trying to learn. Sometimes I would call it ‘Sound Design’ but that’s probably a stretch 🙂

How do you most often start a new track?

I just start a new patch and see what happens.

How do you know when a track is finished?

I never finished a ‘real track’, at least not for many years. I often just make patches and let it run for a couple of nights, sometimes a week or more. I like falling asleep to that, instead of just putting on some random DI stream etc. Most of time I don’t even bother to record it, cuz it is too much of a hassle and I often have problems with getting the levels right etc. But sometimes I put a small video clip on Instagram, but not so much anymore.

Show us your current studio.

Franksemi’s Studio

Best creative advice that you’ve ever heard?

When I was in Art academy in Kolding 25 years ago, I had a teacher that told me that the best art is always something you made 20 years ago. That was funny back then, cuz I asked if he meant, that I made art like a 5 year old. But no, seriously, depending on how you will interpret it, I think this can apply to music as well. I will let you think upon that for yourself.. 🙂

Promote your latest thing… Go ahead, throw us a link.

You are very welcome to follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/franksemi/

[Editor: Eurorack modules: Too much or Never Enough? Leave a comment below. ]