Harvestman Module Review

"After receiving a couple of Harvestman modules today and a CD ready for my European tour, I decided to incorporate the two. A Video of the assembly of the modular for my live setup and a track from the CD. Artwork credit goes to Byonic.

I must say receiving Modules reminds me of my younger days in middle school where I used to buy RAM, install it into my PC and through trial and error THINK I learned something. Well the trial and error is not an option anymore as these bastards cost a hell of a lot more money and I'm not using these modules to help me destroy people in Quake. First impressions: I have to mention that the packaging the units come in are impressive and they arrive in their own Harvestman boxes and static bags. Oh the small touches! At first glance I'm slightly confused as to why the Malgorithm is smaller than the Polivoks Filter depth wise. I was assuming since the Malgorithm has digital components, space would be consolidated into chips while the analog circuitry in the Polivoks simply took up more space. I'm sure I'm right in some cases but in this one I'm not. Both are relatively shallow compared to Livewire and Doepfer Modules. When at NAMM I noticed Scott Jaeger/Harvestman held all of his modules with the similarly shallow Cwejman modules in a small briefcase. It definitely gives new options for cases and not having to lug around a Doepfer portable which is somewhat of a strain for my 3 muscles. I just spilled cranberry juice nearly on everything in Justin's studio. Shh... he doesn't even read this.
Both modules are aesthetically beautiful front and back and well constructed. I'm not sure how I feel about Buchla Style wiggle on the knobs. The knobs definitely makes me feel more rich, almost as if I could afford a Buchla. It's almost like picturing your girlfriend is Shannyn Sossamon while you're...... *ahem*. Anyways this is almost like cheating... so aside from the wiggle causing hallucinations, I'm going to assume that they're a welcome change because I treat my gear like crap and a little give on the knobs will keep them from getting bent.
I'm not going to talk too much about the sounds of the modules until I've gotten more than 20 minutes to play with them, but from first impressions the sounds are much higher quality than I anticipated (cause of examples on youtube). The reason I chose Harvestman modules is the focus on the options of destruction and aggression. The Malgorithm has, from what I've gathered, no bypass and whatever signal is going in will get hurt (in a great masochistic way). The filter on the other hand is surprisingly smooth and has extreme coloration/character that I find completely agreeable. It seems like most of the filter action happens between off to 12 o'clock. The resonance is the most unstable and aggressive I've heard. Also if you turn everything up, the sound warbles a bit, which may be a wanted or unwanted effect.
So to sum it up: If you want chaos, aggression and a bit of finesse, you can't overlook these modules.


felix said...

I was bothered by the wiggle at first too, but I got over it pretty quickly.

In fact, I've come to really like the smoothness and quick-turning quality of the pots. You can really whip them through their whole range very easily/quickly.

The Polivoks is a rad filter! Between it and the Frequensteiner, I feel completely satisfied with my collection of filter sounds. Patch the bandpass output into the non-attenuated CV in and crank the resonance!

Once the good ol' tax return comes in, I'll be ordering a Malgo and Zorlon. Can't wait.

surachai said...

I'm going to try that patch... right now. I hope it implodes on itself! I'm really interested in the Frequensteiner and hope to grab one soon! Please do a review of the Zorlon when you get it as I'm still a bit confused on how it works.

felix said...

I definitely will. I've got demos planned for the Frequensteiner as well...and Plan B M15 and Doepfer A-143-1...and all sorts of shit.

Once I get this case finished and everything's hooked back up of course.

Niall said...

You met the Harvestman in Chicago at that Buchla salon in the west loop - do you remember?