Synth Design Master Class with Vlad Kreimer of SOMA Laboratory

In his latest video, Alex Theakston of Mylar Melodies talks with Vlad Kreimer of SOMA Laboratory about the design philosophy behind the ‘organismic’ synth design and ‘Romantic Engineering’ concepts found in the Lyra-8, Pulsar 23 and other instruments.

“It’s an important subject,” notes Theakston. “Useful if you’re a user, a fellow synth designer and someone who makes modular patches.”

The master class, The Psychology of Synthesis: The Art of Romantic Engineering, was filmed at Machina Bristronica in Bristol September 2023.

Topics covered:

00:00 Opening thoughts

1:50 What is ‘Romantic’ Engineering?

5:28 The need for imperfections

9:46 Static digital oscillator

10:22 …vs analog oscillator

12:30 …vs a violin.

15:47 Musician vs The Sound They Want

22:15 The secret of Lyra-8

25:12 Triggering Emotional Resonance

27:39 What is an Organismic synth?

31:08 Organismic: The Visual Analogy

32:31 Linear Synth vs Organismic

36:10 Vlad’s Challenge to Synth Brands

37:19 Q&A: Macro controls vs Organismic

40:23 Q&A: What synths does Vlad admire?

41:47 Q&A: What is TOO MUCH ‘organismic’?

43:02 Q&A: How do you know when a synth is done?

45:16 Q&A: Can we truly perform synths that aren’t organismic?

48:19 Q&A: Beyond touch, what other ways can we control synths?

50:29 Q&A: Will people commit to learning to play instruments?

51:47 Q&A: Vlad’s Dream: The brain-to-music interface!

53:10 Q&A: What is the Soma design ‘difference’?


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