Crescendi #2 for Poly Evolver Keyboard and Prophet ’08

This improvisation was intended to demonstrate one method of creating dramatic crescendi with several synthesizers.

The soft digital pad is provided throughout by the Poly Evolver Keyboard. When the filter is opened, the tone bristles and hisses with digital aliasing. The sound that next rises from this pad is a brassy patch played on the Prophet ’08. Finally, the high point is reached with the strike of a gliding resonant chord on the second Poly Evolver Keyboard.

As easy as the piece was to play on the keyboards, the crescendo effect was a different matter. The holding of one chord, the simultaneous striking of another chord, the waiting until it had peaked, the striking of third chord, the release of the keyboards and pedal at the precise moment, and then the return to the initial soft pad – all without any interruptions of sound, required a couple of days of practice. I like the effect, and it demonstrates what wonderful musical dynamics are possible with a one-man synthesizer ensemble.

For the standards of this day and age, the Poly Evolver Keyboard is undeniably a noisy instrument. It hisses, coughs, and grumbles like an old man eating his dinner. Or else, it rattles and thumps like an old tracker pipe organ or a harpsichord. But that’s just a part of the charm of this synthesizer. It handles like an idiosyncratic acoustic instrument, and a part of its character is derived from its imperfections. I don’t mind these imperfections, even when they noticeably appear in the recordings. If we synthesists require such absolute perfection in our recordings, then we desire something that is plainly inhuman. No thanks. I prefer the character, with all of its earthy humor.

DSI Poly Evolver Keyboard
DSI Poly Evolver Rack
DSI Prophet ’08 Keyboard
DSI Prophet ’08 Module

DSI Prophet ’08 Module
Hammond XPK 200L Pedal Board

Reverb from Lexicon MX300

Performed live and recorded directly to a Tascam DR-100 MKIII Linear PCM Recorder



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