Hélène Vogelsinger – Bird Singer

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

Panharmonium by Rossum Electronic

There are so many! I’ll go with the first one that comes to mind;
The satisfaction of turning an arpeggio into a celestial pad in just a few seconds, it’s by turning the mix knob of the Panharmonium (Rossum Electronic) that you can achieve it.
Layering is truly integral to my musical identity. And this module is just incredible for that purpose. There isn’t a piece where it’s not present.

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

The piano is truly an indispensable instrument for me. I’ve been playing it since I was little.
My mother “learned” to play it while she was pregnant with me. I truly believe that fetal life has an impact on who we are and become. She gave it up shortly after my birth. But for me, I’ve always been obsessed with this instrument. Just a single note is enough to plunge me into a very deep and intense emotional state. A year ago, I received the Keybird X1 from Keybird Instruments, which I had been eagerly awaiting for several months. It’s the piano of my dreams, lightweight, and portable. If I were to change something, perhaps I would add handles on each side to make transport easier and minimize damage. Also, among all the ongoing projects, I’m currently working on a pickup system for a piano/ modular synth collaboration.

Keybird X1 from Keybird Instruments

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

It’s been years and years since I’ve properly been on vacation, but when I travel, it’s never without my session setup; my two modular cases, my small Mackie mixer, my portable recorders, and the battery that powers all this little world. It fills up the car trunk quite a bit, I must admit, but nothing is impossible with my old Volvo; the modularmobile 🙂 I always have at least one recorder on me, to capture as many sounds and atmospheres as possible. A reflex that stayed with me after my video game sound design training.

Two modular cases in the trunk of The ModularMobile

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

To be honest, nothing comes to mind. Constraint and limitation are integral parts of my creative process. And it must be said that with all the current offerings in these two worlds, boundaries only seem to widen. That being said, I find it truly extraordinary that anyone can access a virtual modular rack, for instance, at a lower cost, to get hands-on experience, test modules, etc ..

Hélène Vogelsinger spelunking for sound

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

I really have no regret concerning my gear journey. Each purchase has taught me a lot, and each resale has allowed me to make a new purchase. This cycle has been necessary for my learning process, the famous “trial & error” that propels us forward. It has also enabled me to make some very nice connections.

Twin modular

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

The piano and singing have always been at the core of my creativity, and I believe they will remain so until my last breath. Adding modular synthesis six years ago was truly a game-changer, allowing me to have a complete electronic orchestra at my fingertips. In my previous projects, this was always the direction I was heading towards.
My latest project, which concluded in 2018, “Planetoid,” was a solo endeavor where I
sang, played acoustic instruments, synths, used loopers, controllers.. and it was everywhere, becoming physically unmanageable, or at least severely limiting my ability to express what I deeply wanted. It also took up a lot of space and prevented me from engaging in current creative processes.

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

Eurorack modules and cables

I always think that if I had known about modular synthesis 20 years ago, it would have been something extraordinary. But not coming from an electronic background, it took all this time to get there. And nothing or no one along the way could have guided me. It happened purely by serendipity at a time when I reached a certain artistic and emotional maturity. But also at a time when I decided to go back to studying after a decade of experience on stage. A moment when I also felt stuck in my progress. And a moment when I completely changed my life. Also, I think I would have opted for quality soundproofing from my very first studio (a bedroom studio).

Ray of modules

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

I think it’s my tuners. Indeed, they have only one function in my current usage, and not the most creative one! But they are truly indispensable, especially for long one-hour live sets, where everything can drift very far in terms of dissonance. Big shoutout to the Endorphin team, with their autopilots that make the task as easy as child’s play!
That being said, they can also be a tool for creating creative patches such tuning-based modulation effects, tuning-based sequencing and control of granular synthesis or phase modulation.

Endorphins Auto Pilot Tuner Modules

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

It might seem a bit obsessive, but it’s about modular synthesis again. There are so many surprising and interesting techniques in this field. That’s what makes this instrument so fascinating – you never stop digging and discovering treasures. I remember not being able to sleep for months on end, my brain patching away at night, and waking up suddenly to jot everything down on paper.

A night full of modules

Among the hundreds of discoveries one makes when starting out with modular;

Resonant Harmonic Attunement :
It’s a technique that harnesses the innate resonance of a filter module to create ethereal harmonics and unlock hidden sonic dimensions. By carefully tuning the resonance knob to a specific frequency, then modulating it dynamically with an LFO or envelope generator, the filter begins to resonate in sympathy with the fundamental frequencies of the sound source. This resonance amplifies certain harmonics while attenuating others, resulting in rich, evolving timbres that seem to breathe and pulse with life.

Feedback loops:
By routing the output of a module back into itself or into another part of the signal chain, you can generate chaotic and unpredictable sounds that can add depth and character to your patches. Experimenting with feedback loops can lead to unexpected results and push the boundaries of traditional synthesis techniques.

Wavefolder and Waveshaper Exploration:
Wavefolders and waveshapers are modules that can drastically alter the shape and timbre of waveforms. Delving into the creative possibilities of these modules can lead to unique and characterful sounds.

Random and Stochastic Sequencing:
Introducing randomness and probability into your sequences can yield unpredictable and evolving musical patterns. Utilizing modules such as random voltage generators, sample-and-hold units, and probabilistic sequencers can result in dynamic and constantly changing compositions

Cross-Modulation and FM Synthesis:
Experimenting with cross-modulation and frequency modulation (FM) synthesis techniques can produce rich and harmonically complex sounds. By modulating the frequency of one oscillator with another, you can achieve a wide range of timbral variations and textures.

Complex Envelope and Function Generators: Utilizing modules capable of generating complex envelopes and functions, such as AD (Attack-Decay) and ADSR (Attack- Decay- Sustain-Release) generators, can add depth and movement to your patches. These modules can be used to shape the amplitude, timbre, and modulation of your sounds in intricate ways.

Exploration of Nonlinear Signal Processing:
Modules that perform nonlinear signal processing, such as wavefolders, ring modulators, and distortion units, offer unique opportunities for sonic exploration. By pushing signals through these modules, you can create harmonically rich textures and unearth new sonic territories.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with unconventional patching techniques and signal routings.
Thinking outside the box and exploring unexpected connections between modules can lead to surprising and innovative results.

I could go on like this for hours, as the possibilities for discovery are endless. But what surprised me the most when I discovered its existence is its ability to substitute for an orchestra. To reach the orchestral patch as I practice it today, it took years of research and experimentation. This process has been incredible, a real journey, whether it’s the search for modules or their practice. In the first two years, I systematically unpatched my system after each use to discover new things every time. This technique really allowed me to know my instrument almost inside out, because despite the thousands of hours spent, there is still so much to learn and discover.

Artist or Band name?

Hélène Vogelsinger


Immersive & orchestral ambient electronic music


Hélène Vogelsinger
Hélène Vogelsinger

Where are you from?

I am French by nationality, and have been based in France for a little over 10 years now.
Due to my parents’ profession, we moved around quite a bit when I was growing up, my parents, my three brothers, and I. I spent a significant portion of my life in Beirut, Lebanon.
I returned to Europe at the age of 19, with the sole aim of pursuing a career in music. At that time, the music scene in Lebanon was not as developed as it is today. I actually went back for a short tour in 2017, where I witnessed the great evolution that had taken place. It was truly a beautiful and moving experience.
I was deeply affected by this intense period in Lebanon, which had a significant impact on my way of being, living, and composing. For musical projects, I then lived in England, and eventually returned to France, first in Paris, and then in the southwest of France, where some of my family resides. Perhaps the only place where I have some roots. It was one of the best choices of my life. Sort of an unconscious decision, following a burnout in Paris, where I struggled quite a bit, juggling odd jobs that allowed me flexibility in my schedule, thus giving me time for my musical projects and performing on stage in the evenings. The cramped spaces, the lack of nature, the economic constraints caused by the high cost of living, and the hustle and bustle of big cities (which I really appreciate in small doses) eventually took a toll on my morale. It was a very instructive journey nonetheless, and I wouldn’t change a thing if I could.

How did you get into music?

The voice was my very first instrument. I have been singing and composing on the piano since a very young age. So, as you can imagine, my very first compositions at the age of 5 were not very complex. At the same age, I began learning solfeggio, piano, and flute for 5 years. This training was put on hold when we moved to Beirut, but I continued on my own. Indeed, I never stopped singing, playing, or composing. However, this period was more of an accumulation of what I call « inputs »; all these new sounds that are only found there, the wonderful oriental music and its approach. But it was also a time of intense new experiences, such as repeated bombings, the war in 2006, but also, and especially, constant human warmth, that magnetic ground, that desire to embrace life to the fullest, that confidence in the future despite the difficult times and uncertainties. These were great lessons in humanity, humility, and resilience. It took me many years to readjust to the West, the expatriate syndrome and return one. It’s thanks to music and art in general that I was able to find a balance, allowing me to express all these experiences, but also encounters, people who held my hand and showed me the way when I was disoriented by all these changes.

What still drives you to make music?

Hélène Vogelsinger in the wild

The search for something deeper than this material existence. Through this guiding source, this force that has inhabited me since forever. I’m sure many artists and enthusiasts of all kinds understand when I say that I can’t do anything else, that it’s my life’s path, my ‘mission.’ Some may find this word a bit strong, but that’s how I feel. My family, who comes from a non-artistic background, took some time to understand it, but when we reunited 7 years ago, in the southwest of France, and they witnessed my dedication, things really changed. Having the unconditional support of loved ones, people we love, and who love us in return, is priceless. It’s an enormous strength. Especially on this path strewn with obstacles that is professionalizing in any art in general.

How do you most often start a new track?

In recent years, it’s after visiting abandoned, depopulated places, far from civilization.Their memory, the passing of time, and the energy they emit have been at the heart of my inspiration. Indeed, since 2019, I’ve embarked on creating a very specific process that unfolds in several stages (location scouting, first exploration, transcription, layers of perception). In terms of composition, and thus the transcription of the experience, it often starts with the piano and voice. This is how the pattern or melody is composed, which becomes the foundation, the essence of the composition. And everything else is built around it in a very organic way. I find myself in a state of ‘Flow,’ where space and time cease to exist. There are no difficult calculations behind all this. It’s like being the instrument of an invisible force, a downward movement, an energy that permeates my entire being, only to rise again. It has always worked this way.

How do you know when a track is finished?

In the context of my creative process, and thus when we record a session, it’s when it
reaches its conclusion that the piece is truly finished. But in terms of composition and “orchestration,” the stage preceding the session, it’s an intuition. I know it. I feel it. It’s a feeling of fulfillment.

Show us your current studio

Hélène Vogelsingers Studio

Best creative advice that you’ve ever heard?

Embrace the process, not just the outcome. While it may seem peculiar, I’ve found profound wisdom in a self-imposed directive that I’ve diligently adhered to, particularly in the realm of crafting and refining my creative process. However, I must attribute this insight to a confluence of factors, including personal experiences, trial and error, and the invaluable guidance from my mentors and peers.
One particular catalyst was a course on ‘unusual recording’ that I undertook at Berklee College of Music, which significantly propelled me out of my comfort zone roughly five years ago. It’s a profound reminder that creativity is not merely about achieving a specific goal or producing a masterpiece; it’s about immersing oneself fully in the act of creation, embracing the journey of exploration, experimentation, and growth. By focusing on the process rather than fixating solely on the end result, we free ourselves from the constraints of perfectionism and self-doubt. We become more open to taking risks, making mistakes, and learning from our experiences. This mindset shift not only fosters a deeper sense of fulfillment and joy in our creative endeavors, but also enables us to tap into our true potential and express ourselves authentically.
Ultimately, it’s the journey of creation—the moments of inspiration, the challenges overcome, the lessons learned—that shapes us as artists and allows our creativity to flourish in ways we may never have imagined.

Hélène Vogelsinger at the modules

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

I’m just going to share with you my YouTube channel where I’ve been documenting my creative process for several years. It’s a place purely focused on artistic and spiritual exploration. I hope it can bring you some inspiration for your own journey, as others have done for me.


Sascha Haber – Northern Light Modular

1. Favorite knob or fader or switch on a piece of gear and why?

That one is easy… the knobs on my Tegeler Audio Manufaktur Schwerkraftmaschine.

Tegeler Audio Manufaktur Schwerkraftmaschine

I don’t have much outboard gear, but the Tegeler gear is simply outstanding.

They spend a good amount of practical engineering on those motorised pots and switches and seeing them turn while using the plugin is just magic.

And then you touch them during a session and they do not resist, but instead write the automation…

Wonderful german engineering 🙂 

Tegeler Audio Manufaktur Schwerkraftmaschine insides

2. What bit of music gear are you particularly proud of?

That is my TTSH/1601 combo… the piece of gear that started my soldering career i would say.
I always dreamt of owning and playing with an ARP 2600, and 6 or 7 years back there was no re-issues like today.

But then I hear about this swedish project that was around for a while and ordered a kit from Jon. Little did I knew what it takes to build an instrument! It took like 3 months and occupied most of the living room space all the time.

But there I started to invest in tools like a proper DMM, my first real soldering iron and a scope. I actually managed to finish the project, got it fully working and learned so much in the process.

So I started the Facebook group called TTSH and at some point I did a group buy and talked Behringer into selling us a few thousand fader caps.

TTSH/1601 combo

3. How do you see your gear in the landscape of music?

Very much as accessories to existing Buchla systems… like Akrapovic makes racing exhausts for Ducati, we make expansions for 4U systems.

When we started Northern Light Modular both Marc and I had a small DIY system.

Well, mine grew at that time as I built each and every kit that i could get my hands on and after a year I had a massive 24U system blinking at me.

But then we looked at things like the Ornaments and Crime, Temps Util or the offerings by Mutable Instruments at the time and thought, that kind of stuff is missing in the 4U world.

And instead of cross patching Euro to 4U we got in contact with Max, and Patrick and of course Emelie and looked into collaborations to port them into 4U.

The 2OC was our first project and at that time in 2017 very much a Euro module behind a 4U panel.

It took another year or two to adapt all the software to work properly in the 1,2V range, revert negative voltages and show proper values on the displays.

But it was a great time, 3D printers allowed us to experiment with front panels and making your own PCBs was exotic and fun.

2OC in 4U

4. What music has inspired you to produce this gear?

I am a sucker for Berlin synth school…Tangerine Dream etc.
The O_c is in my opinion the best multi tool one can add to a rack, even if it takes a bit of learning .

But once you figured out how to cascade the quantizer playing variations of simple shift register notes, it plays generative music that is not just random noise.
And I like that a lot.

5. Most surprising tip or trick or technique that you’ve discovered about your gear?

Haha… the stuff other people do with my gear compared to what I intended it to be used for always amazes me.

Like, we build this massive 3 voice oscillator, spend countless hours to make it track 8 octaves and FM in sync with each other.

Sounds like angels singing and then someone comes and cross modulates the FM with the sync and all hell breaks loose.

So I am just watching and standing in awe, one part of me wants to yank out the cables and the others is like, that is super impressive, bro.

Northern Light Modular Animated Tricillator Model 2AT

6. How did you get into music gear making?

Well, after that TTSH adventure, diverse EuroRack modules that came and went i stumbled upon the 4U crowd and how few options they had.

So we talked to Émelie Gillet (Mutable Instruments) and Max Stadler (Ornaments & Crime, Temps, Utile) about porting some of their designs and they were very helpful sharing and helping us up on the horse.

My lovely girlfriend Katrine, who built many of the SMD designs we have now, also is a wizard with the 3D printer and so we could prototype our new modules very quickly.

Like a great danish philosopher once said : 
Life in plastic, it’s fantastic  🙂


7. How do you most often start a new piece of gear? Where do the ideas come from?

Necessity I want to say, but that’s not quite true.

More often it is actually artists airing out ideas, pointing me to existing gear, or just imagining things.

Though the latest thing we’re making, was born from an idea to have a multi effect that works without any cables.
I have had a handfull of different guitar pedals and it really gets out of hand at some point with power and audio and midi cables.

So I wanted to build something that works straight in the Music Easel and can use its modulation.

We made a Kickstarter to found the project, I learned to program with Max/MSP at Notam/Oslo  over winter and BLAM!… we had a multi effect.

Northern Light Modular – mobile effect engine

8. How do you know when a piece of gear is finished?

Is it ever ?

Most of our modules evolve constantly… either we fix small things here and there or sometimes, when they need a bigger change we made a V2 or V3 like with the Ornaments.
The latest version has input and output attenuators and LEDs indicate the actual level produced…
I think no other O-c in the market has that… and the software still works with that added hardware part.

Every year we also do special edition that we auction off for a good cause, and last year we made one for the international trans fund.

Northern Light Modular – Dual CV Polymorpher

9. What is the best creative or production advice that you’ve ever heard?

Go with the flow ! 

Turn off Facebook, put the phone on silent and jam… just record what you are doing, maybe you strike gold, maybe not 🙂


Sascha Haber

Where are you from? Where are you based?

From Germany…the south…and based in Copenhagen since 2006 and Northern Light Modular has been operating since may of 2017, for six years now.

Show us your current studio/workshop!

Sascha Haber studio
Sascha Habers Studio

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

Northern Light Modular – http://northernlightmodular.com/
Modular Grid – https://bit.ly/2No5sus

nystada – Experimental Vibes

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

Klavis Twin Waves oscillator

One of the encoders on Klavis Twin Waves oscillator, which clicks so you can dial in tiny and well chosen amount of modulation. It’s good to have a haptic feedback on a knob for better control.

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

Elektron Model:Cycles

The Elektron Model:Cycles is quite close being perfect for my needs of sounds and sequencing. Especially the sequencer is fantastic plus the possibilities of sound shaping in a frequency modulation way, which I’m really into. On the downside it’s „just“ a fixed synth structure and this was one of the reasons I wanted to go modular. For example: just one LFO per sound engine didn’t felt right. in the way I want to explore sounds and movement. Included CV control would be a thing I’d want to change.

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

On holidays I normally take a break from music making itself. I take no gear with me, but maybe my laptop, so when I want to, I can open Ableton Live or VCV Rack and return to my roots of music production in a DAW.

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

I’d always prefer hardware over software, so in general there would be no reason for me to make a hardware into software. I’d like to have some Ableton Live sound shaping tools in Hardware, for example the Glue compressor or Color Limiter. Also the Spectrum analyser would be handy to have in a hardware environment. 

Ableton Glue compressor, Color Limiter and the Spectrum analyser

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

Not really. Since I was making music in a DAW for over a decade, I only bought some midi controllers, Once in a while a hardware synth or effect, but not that many and I always thoroughly considered which one to buy.
I still love my Microbrute for example or Akai LPD8 midi controller. I sold a Waldorf Streichfett and a Beatstep, but I’m still fine with it. 


Since my setup lately has become hardware only, it’s awesome to still have so many midi options that I’ve kept in boxes for many years. Same with cables.

Akai LPD8

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

Elektron Model:Cycles and Modular system. Hardware with many sound shaping options and hands-on control in general.

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

I’d still start with a DAW and VCV Rack to check out synths and workflow, if the fun continues then I’d get into hardware earlier.

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

Power modules which are 4hp wide, space which you need for another, nicer and more creative module, but without them the modular system wouldn’t even run. At least for my power system which I’m using at the moment.

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

The fact that so many tools in modular can produce sound like LFOs, envelope generators, filters… self-oscillation is fascinating.

Artist or Band name?



Electronic music with an experimental vibe



Where are you from?

Hamburg, Germany

How did you get into music?

Quite young as a kid I was into music. Watching music television in the 80s and 90s. Started playing the guitar at 12 years old. From grunge and Punkrock I got into EBM and synth pop, from Metal into Singer/Songwriter and TripHop.
I loved music so much and it is a reliable partner for most of my life. But besides playing the guitar from time to time, listening to music and writing for an online music magazine, it took a long time to feel confident with writing my own songs.
A good friend of mine was making music with DAWs and Midi controllers. I got more and more curious about it. The fact that I don’t need a band or other musicians to make complete songs was so fascinating, that I tried Cubase, but the whole thing started properly with Ableton Live 8.
About 2012/2013 I released my first songs via SoundCloud. Without my friend encouraging me on and on, I’d might never have started music production.

What still drives you to make music?

Mostly the love for sounds and the never ending urge for exploration of sounds. For me it’s a journey with many precious moments that’s like no other input for your heart and soul. Its good to tame the inner demons, to process the part of you that is simply beyond words. It just feels good and right to spend time, only me and my music. Pausing the every day struggles in life.

How do you most often start a new track?

By searching for nice sounds. By letting it flow and trying to have fun with all the shaping tools. Only when it’s fun and a bit feeling like a child playing with whatever what makes sounds, and I’m in a curious mood, one thing leads to another. The best tracks just happen by accident I’d say. Mostly it’s important for me that it is about having fun and enjoying the moment. 

How do you know when a track is finished?

Sessions on the eurorack

That’s a special topic for me. In my mostly DAW driven musical times, I couldn’t stop working on tracks, on master effects, mixing duties and so on. At some point it was no fun at all and I got frustrated more and more. At the moment recording Eurorack sessions to see if it turns out to be a nice track or not is the key for me.

If not I just start from scratch another day. When I’ve played the guitar it always felt good and calming, with hardware synths and modular I can reproduce that feeling. And if a session is good it may be a track or not. I’m not so into producing tracks anymore, mostly recording music and see if it fits.

Show us your current studio

nystada studio

Best creative advice that you’ve ever heard?

It’s good to limit yourself sometimes, Limitation of the number of sound making machines and options you have in a studio environment. Taking part in some of the Disquiet Junto challenges is great, where you apply some compositional specifications and you are limited to special sounds and special topics for example, this had a great impact on my journey. https://disquiet.com

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

In the middle of July I’ve released a 2 track via the Zenvampires art collective. It features live recorded Eurorack sessions with only a few tweaks in Ableton.