A Portrait of Weinglas
//Weinglas is a wall of tubes treated screaming frequencies hitting your stomach // a snare sound that appears in the middle of a drone when you don’t expect it ////Weinglas is the dark side of the Roland Cr 78 //the nightmare schreec of a Buchla and the sound clash of growling tubes //We contacted him trying to understand more about the secrets behind his powerful sound , his approach to the modular arts and the courage to fill a glass with a bottle of Brugal on a 15 K Buchla .
//Weinglas is…a few words from you about who you are //your interests //your passions //your likes //dislikes
Weinglas is an electronic musician from Frankfurt/Germany who concentrates on working with strange modular sound generators. He is making electronic music since the good old days of the Atari ST, but was getting more and more tired of using a computer. Weinglas uses his sounds to paint the world a little more black! But he has fun in making even the darkest drones and soundscapes. Weinglas likes good music regardless of the instruments used. And he loves to spend as much time as possible with his wife and daughter.
//First contact…how did you start with modular synthesizers and how they changed your music making point of view
I started using modular synthesizers about five years ago with a complete 12 HP Doepfer Eurorack system together with a MAQ16/3 sequencer, which i bought used. This was a perfect entry in a new world of sounds. Unfortunately I suffered G.A.S. quite fast and sold a lot of my Doepfer modules to get more Westcoast style modules. Looking back I should have stayed much longer with the all Doepfer system. So my advice for newbies is to grow slowly on a system.
//Tubes…the importance of tubes in your system //mode of use //patch examples
My goal is to achieve a massive wall of sound. And to reach this in an old fashioned style, tubes are the perfect solution. You can use them as a simple CV-able overdrive/distortion device to make the electronic sounds more raw, fat, and gritty. Or you can even take them as a complete synth voice. I love to use the Metasonix “Wretch Machine” for this, a complete tube synth, because you can play it “in tune” simply by connecting a square wave audio out to the VCO CV inputs. Then the Wretch Machine tries to sync to the input signal. If it fails sometimes, it rewards you with never before heard screams. And the icing on the cake of the tube sound is a bit of spring reverb!
// Buchla…tell us about your experiences with your Buchla system
A very good friend of mine, Worsel Strauss, had one of the first (or maybe the first) Buchla 200e systems in Germany. So I had the chance to be introduced to this nice system by a real expert before I decided to get one myself. And I was aware of all the problems of an European Buchla user with no service point outside the US. The biggest advantage of a Buchla system from my point of view is not the sound! It is the inclusion of randomness and composition in the sound programming process. With other instruments/systems I do program a sound and then think about how to use it. Or I have a composition in my mind and try to find the perfect sound for it. With the Buchla all of this is just one process. I know you can achieve this with other systems too. But using the Buchla changed my approach to using modular systems.
There are other advantages too: The preset manager lets you store files! On a modular system! Of course it cannot save the patch cords but it is nonetheless a great feature. And there is more: The Banana cables for the control voltages, the 227e makes it a pleasure to use quadrophonic sounds, and the 272e even gives you four CV-able FM tuners. There are a lot of strange modules available from Buchla. The only thing missing IMHO is a module to mangle samples.
//Tales from Buchla and Cr : vol 1…why the CR78 and how did you interface it with your buchla system // tell us more about the work behind your album with Game of life
“Tales from Buchla and Cr : Vol. 1” is my EP on the fabulous “Game of Life” label. This was a project to bring a very old electronic musical instrument, the Roland CR78 CompuRhythm, the first programmable drum machine that was e.g. used by John Foxx, Blondie or Phil Collins, together with the Buchla 200e, a very modern electronic musical instrument. The old fashioned analog drum sounds of the CR78 are a perfect addition to the hybrid sound of the Buchla. The “Tales from Buchla and Cr : Vol. 1” EP features very different sounding tracks and even a hommage to Phil Collins, who did use the CR78 quite a lot. The tracks include danceable songs as well as very slowly evolving dark soundscapes! So it is the perfect entry to the world of Weinglas even for people who usually don’t like “noise”.
The sync of both machines was quite easy to achieve with the CR78 as the master. The trigger out of the CompuRhythm could be used to send 8 or 16 beats per measure to the Buchla. But there is a third option that I used for the project. With this “combination” mode every beat of the Bass Drum and the High Bongo sends out a trigger. With the selection of the rhythm on the CR78 and the cancel voice feature you really could play the triggers.
//Zerosum Inertia…Tell us more about it
Zerosum Inertia Tube Modules are built by another very good friend of mine, Brian Kirby. He develops highly recommendable modules for 5U systems and for the Buchla compatible Eardrill Modulemodule system. Brian offers modules for everything from subtle wave shaping to more drastic sound mangling or even great filters. I bought every module he ever built for the Buchla system, because they are a wonderful sonic addition to the Buchla sound. He even made me a special “Weinglas” Modulemodule! And he is the only one that offers Tube modules for the Buchla system!
//Future…Your to do list // Your future plans // Your wishes
I am working on tracks for a future release which features the darker side of Weinglas’ modular sounds. But this will take another while. I do not even have a label for this at the moment. So, first there will be another EP on my bandcamp side maybe at the end of the summer which – like it’s predecessor “Travelling” – will be made solely on the Teenage Engineering OP1 while I am travelling! But the most important thing is to stay healthy and have a lot of fun in my life. So take care!
// A self made question…Do yourself a question and give yourself an answer
This is a tough one! But maybe this one might be interesting:
With modular electronic music we are making music that for the most of us is not compatible with the commercial music taste. And “Noise” is even more obscure for the usual music listener. This makes it difficult to be part of a local scene. Forums like Muffwiggler or Sequencer.de or websites like Soundcloud, Groundloup or even Youtube are a great place to hang out with other musicians who share the same interests all over the world. I met a lot of great people and great musicians there. And it does not have to be online only. There are a lot of modular meets like e.g. the Happy Knobbing in Fischbach/Germany.