Robert Moog and Max Brand
Synthesizer pioneer Robert Moog began designing electronic circuits for Austrian composer Max Brand in 1957 – the instrument was completed roughly a decade later.
The sounds it produces were featured in a concert at the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz on September 6, 2009. The composition is by Elisabeth Schimana, performed by Manon Liu Winter and Gregor Ladenhauf.
About the Max Brand synthesizer:
Wood, metal, keyboard, bandmanual, pedals, patch board, mixer, voltage controlled oscillator, low frequency oscillator, ring modulator, lopass filter, envelope generator, frequency divider, formant filter, tubes, transistors
I am the Machine – A Personal Approach
Deep within the hallucinatory ramblings of an electro-acoustic sound, it is this voice, hollering, steeped in pathos and desperately overamplified, that sets your teeth on edge. The launch has already been prepared against a background of crackling tension, the rocket has been fired with a whizz and a bang, and has finally slipped into space to the sound of an atmospheric juddering: these sounds in the first minute of Max Brand’s tape composition The Astronauts (1962) are also accompanied by voices, but on the right side of the pathetic. Brand had used NASA recordings of the radio conversations between ground control and John Glenn during the latter’s first flight into space as the basis for his electroacoustic ode, a pathetic oratorio in honor of the god of technology. This excerpt is from the book “Zauberhafte Klangmaschinen | Von der Sprechmaschine bis zur Soundcard”, Schott 2008