Monday, July 18, 2011
The Moog Liberation!
The Moog Liberation was the first commercially-produced keytar synthesizer released in 1980 by Moog Music. The Liberation was designed to be played in the same posture as one would play a guitar. One can set it down on a surface of some kind and play it like an old-fashioned keyboard too though, and you can sit down or stand up while you play it, just like one would regularly play another traditional keyboard or pianos. However, playing it standing up and strapped on like a guitar is the coolest way to go.
The Liberation featured two monophonic VCOs and a polyphonic section that could play organ sounds. Both oscillators could be set to triangle, sawtooth, or square waveforms and switched over a 3-octave range. The Liberation's keyboard was aftertouch-sensitive and on its neck featured spring-loaded wheels for filter cutoff, modulation, and volume as well as a ribbon-controlled pitch bend. The Liberation had a single VCF and two ADS envelope generators. A 4,000-foot cable* could connect the Liberation to its rackmounted half which housed the power supply and CV/Gate output sockets, which is great if you want to play it out in a field at a music festival. If you're looking to perform with a cheap (by Moog standards) analog synth strapped on like a guitar then the Liberation should be right up your alley. Otherwise there's always the Prodigy, a long time staple of electronic musicians.
Jean Michel Jarre plays a Liberation on his DVD release of Oxygene Live In Your Living Room.
The triangle of light you see in this video, appears around the player when playing the Moog Liberation!
The Human League used the Liberation during the songs Empire State Human, Being Boiled and Circus Of Death at the Wickerman Festival in July 2009. These are all great song titles.
The Liberation has also been used by 808 State, Apollo 440, (also, 220 Below, Godhead 5000 & 35 Elders) Herbie Hancock, Joy Electric, Devo, Kool & The Gang, Six Finger Satellite (another awesome bandname), Stereolab, Spiral-Shaped Mind and Page McConnell of Phish.
"I listen to Moog Liberation. It is great fun for me." ---Andaz from vintagesynth.com
"My son showed this to me and I think it is the coolest thing since I saw Keith Emerson play the theramin on his body in 1973!" ---Jody
note: The one downside of the Moog Liberation is it's fucking heavy!