ALM Motto Akemie, Busy Circuits Akemie Taiko module as a drum synth plugin

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ALM Motto Akemie is a new drum synth plugin that brings the company’s popular Akemie Taiko Eurorack module to your DAW.

A chip shortage characterized 2022 and 2023. The situation has now improved in 2024. Many synthesizer companies, especially small Eurorack manufacturers, were affected by this. Modules were sold out for months, resulting in fewer sales. S

Some broke new ground and expanded their portfolio with software, a business that will never suffer from a chip crisis. Noise Engineering went the plugin route; others built replicas for the VCV rack platform. The British developers of ALM Busy Circuits have now also opened the plugin gate. 

ALM Motto Akemie

ALM Motto Akemie

Meet Motto Akemie, a plugin version of its popular Akemie Taiko hardware plus extras not available in the Eurorack module. 

At its core, the plugin is a six-voice FM drum Synthesizer. Each voice consists of two operators with classic Taiko controls and wavetables. It includes level, pan, start, end, ratio, speed, wave, feedback, and two releases (1,2) as controls. 

The voice is capable of playful FM sounds from pure sinusoidal oscillations to mega clonks to chaotic self-feedbacking enveloped noise promises the developers.

Unlike the Akemie Taiko module, Motto Akemie features a built-in multi-track step sequencer. You get per voice a sequencer with variable sequence length and speed. In Eurorack, you need an extra module for this; here, it’s built into the plugin at no extra cost.

The sequencer offers 16 pattern banks in total with easy-to-use copy, save, and load pattern features. There is also a track randomizer for instant new inspiration. Besides this, you get per-step modulation sequencers for all voice parameters. This allows you to create very complex sequences with evolving parameters. 

Full automation and MIDI control per voice are also onboard and should not be missing. MTS-ESP support for micro tunings gives you additional creative options. ALM ships the Motto Akemie with various factory presets. 

First Impression

A logical step for me as a small company if you want to grow. You either make big instruments (synths, drum machines) or software. The latter is much easier to implement. They have the algorithm, so a good part of the work has already been done.

It’s great to see that non-Eurorack users can now explore the Taiko engine in their DAW without investing in a modular system.

ALM Motto Akemie is available now for $40. It runs as a VST3, and AU plugin on macOS (native Apple Silicon + Intel) and Windows plugin. On the developer website, you can also find a 7-day full functional demo. 

More information here: ALM

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