MATRIXSYNTH: Ambient generative music on a modular synth: 'Dizzy Dreams' by POB

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Ambient generative music on a modular synth: 'Dizzy Dreams' by POB

Published on Nov 2, 2016 Patrick OBrien

"This ambient modular synthesizer patch is an attempt at creating generative music - music that is ever-different & changing, as created by a system. The patch could go on and on with very little or no repetition or interaction. As you see in this video, I powered up the case and walked away, letting it run by itself.

Generative Music revolves around the idea that music, or sounds may be "generated" by a musician selecting parameters within an ecology, such that the ecology will perpetually produce different variations based on the parameters and algorithms used.

I chose to record a long video for those who want background music, music to fall asleep to, or to find the best music to listen to while studying, or for those wanting to hear dreamy yet spooky cinematic analog sound progressions.

My original thought on this piece: imagining someone who's in a deep dream state but experiences subtle interruptions, as if they are getting knocked in and out of consciousness because they are dizzy or hungover.

Only using 2 oscillators (Make Noise's STO and Pittsburgh Modular's Oscillator) and a lot of effects, this one even surprised me! Some of the deep tones sound like brass instruments blaring, while others formed melodies that sound like French Horns.

While some reverb is coming from the Mutable Instruments Clouds, the entire mix is sent through an Eventide H9 Harmonizer Effects Processor.

The Modulargrid link showing the modules and their layout:

Make Noise Wogglebug: the clock source and random triggers to the Renee.

Sputnik Modular Selector: which switches between 2 of the STO's waves + the Pittsburgh Oscillator's saw.

4ms Rotating Clock Divider: delays the triggering of the Elements, the sine wave tones from the 3rd STO wave out, and the freeze on Clouds.

Mutable Instruments Warps: Inputs coming from STO and Wogglebug noise generator.

Mutable Instruments Elements: Creating long bell tones that warp up and down slowly.

Mutable Instruments Peaks: Creates the kick.

Pittsburgh Oscillator: Saw tooth that creates the cinematic brass sounds.

Pittsburgh ADSR: Makes the Elements fade in and out as slow as possible.

Mutable Instruments Ripples: Frequency is modulated to create high and low pitches from the STO.

Alright Devices Chronoblog: The big delay with the kick that repeats about 20 times.

Make Noise STO: provides most the tones for this patch.

Make Noise Rene: select scale that is triggered by Wogglebug and is sent to the STO.

Mutable Instruments Clouds: provides the wet/dry, stereo, feedback, and reverb of the mix.

XAOC Devices Batumi: Varios LFOs on just about everything imaginable.

Zvex Instant Lo-Fi Junky: slightly bends and warps the STO voices.

Make Noise Optomix: VCA for Elements and Warps.

Malekko MUTE 4: A mixer with all channels unmuted.

Pittsburgh Modular Outs: Mono signal from the MUTE 4 mix, going out to the Eventide H9 box.


All sounds sent to Ableton Live to create the master file for YouTube, SoundCloud, and Instagram.

I recorded the video with a GoPro Hero 4 then manually synced the video with the audio using iMovie.

All modules were inside a 208HP Eurorack case from Dark Modular Cases.


No computers were used in the performance of this piece. All modular synths, recorded live in a single take.


I am Patrick O'Brien aka POB living in Los Angeles.
You can also find me as obrienmedia on social media. Please message me for further inquiries or licensing.

On SoundCloud:
On Twitter:
On Instagram: (search hashtag #modularsynth)

Recorded October 30, 2016 in Los Angeles, California."

No comments:

Post a Comment


©2018 Matrixsynth - All posts are presented here for informative, historical and educative purposes as applicable within fair use.
privacy policy