At Superbooth 22, SOMA Labs will premiere TERRA, a new experimental microtonal Synthesizer that tries to unify nature with technology.
The Superbooth, the 2022 edition will take place next week in Berlin. It is the class reunion of all Synthesizer and electronic music friends from all over the world. SB is also an event where you can get to know new products and the heads behind the fascinating products. The event makes it clear how colorful the developer scene is.
There the big players, often represented by marketing people, line up with fascinating tiny Boutique companies. For example, you can meet Vlad Kreimer, the SOMA Labs founder and ingenious developer of unique experimental synthesizers, drum machines, and effects. At Superbooth 22, the still-young company will premiere a very unique, mysterious microtonal Synthesizer.
SOMA Labs TERRA
TERRA is a polyphonic microtonal Synthesizer that tries to unify nature with technology and reach a perfect balance of simplicity and versatility. It offers a digital engine that contains 32 synthesis algorithms. They are complex in the code but are designed in such a way that the user can achieve a wide sound palette with very few parameters. Less sound programming, more the focus on music and performance.
SOMA Labs promised classical beautiful tones to complex atonal noise and all this with very smooth and fast transitions between the extremes. They have not yet disclosed which algorithms power the TERRA Synthesizer. From the first sound demo, it sounds very organic and natural. A lot like physical modeling, but my ears could be wrong. Then, it has a built-in FX processor with which you can take your sounds further or for adding the final touch.
Another thing is still unclear from the engine. SOMA Labs says: “while the sound generation is digital, TERRA has a unique custom-built and top-quality analog part that makes it sound rich, natural, clear, and powerful at the same time”. Does that mean that the Terra is hybrid and hides analog technology inside like analog filters, saturation…? At the latest at the Superbooth 22, we will know more about it.
The SOMA Labs developers, including Vlad Kreimer, are constantly experimenting with new interface concepts. They continue that in the TERRA. Visually, it is made of a piece of wood with knobs, sensors, and more. Very fascinating and different from what you know from traditional electronic instruments that have an industrial look.
TERRA is all about complex pitch manipulations and expressivity. For this, the interface is packed with sensors: 12-note sensors with velocity and pressure (attack and vibrato), 4 dynamic sensors for timbre control, 4 pitch-shifting sensors, 2 hold sensors, and a 3-axis motion sensor. The latter allows you to create modulations by using your hands and body.
The built-in sensor-based keyboard looks small but is powerful as a full Grand Piano. Each note of it can be tuned with an accuracy of 125 steps semitone achieved with a new unique system of pitch-shifting using four sensors. By pressing different combinations, you get 16 keyboard transpose variations including up to 3 octaves up and down, fifth, fourth, third, tone, etc.
Further, TERRA can save up to 96 presets that are stored directly on the play sensors. No display like no all other SOMA products before. A 6 LED-sensor triangle displays all information for you.
A video matching the new Synthesizer is available on YouTube. Here SOMA takes us into strange, mysterious worlds of nature aliens, or so. To be honest I don’t know how to call these. Terra looks very fascinating, but I’m not sure if the interface is that easy to use. It looks very out of this world. And in connection with this intro video, my first impression is reinforced. I’ll test it out for you next week in Berlin. If I don’t get in touch, I must have been kidnapped by the nature space aliens.
SOMA Labs Terra will be available at end of 2022/beginning of 2023. The price is TBA.
More information here: SOMA Labs
Wtf?! I want one of these
Nice!! Enner its the dark side and terra looks like the bright side of the soma force. 🙂
Want expecting this to sound so musical. The video is a bit OTP, but the instrument sure looks promising