Sunday 17 November 2013

Nord Coast - Micro Modular Patches

Performance patches created on the diminutive yet powerful Clavia Nord Micro Modular.

I'd seen these odd shaped and coloured boxes lying round in studios gathering dust before. But it wasn't until I saw Rastko Lazic's inspiring video that I took the Micro Modular seriously. Here is a collection of patches, driven solely by the Micro Modular's three knobs:

Yes, it sounds digital and you need to jump through hoops to get the editor to work on a modern Mac operating system, but it's worth it. I've used the G2 demo for years to try out ideas, so I was used to the workflow. The NM engine doesn't have some of the conveniences or modules of the G2. But, as ever, there are workarounds. If you get stuck, consult the Nord Modular Book, edited by James Clark or Rob Hordijk's workshops.

In his video, Rastko uses a new Faderfox controller to play his patches. The two make a perfect pair, but I didn't want to be tied to a USB host i.e. computer. The older FF controllers are less flexible when it comes to custom assignments, so I built my own. I used a Doepfer Pocket Electronics kit and a perspex sandwich. The joystick is a small, game controller type.

With that built (and an old Faderfox controller now bought ...), I've realized that the beauty of the Micro Modular is its simplicity. With some canny patching you can get a lot of mileage out of three knobs! Download the album to access the patches and try them yourself.

Here is a link to Clavia's sound-bank. If you're using a Mac, the V3 Editor will run with varying degrees of stability and frustration under emulation. I have both Win XP and 10.6 versions running under VMWare Fusion on a 10.8 system.