"Doesn’t sound like much when I play it... Maybe someone can get something good out of it": Bob Moog didn't think much of the "Abominatron", his first ever Moog Modular prototype

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The Bob Moog Foundation is planning the first complete public broadcast of the Abominatron Tape, a recording made by Bob Moog that captures the synth pioneer explaining the controls, parameters and capabilities of an early Moog Modular prototype for the very first time. 

Bob Moog made the 84-minute recording to send to friend and collaborator Herb Deutsch in 1964, who later donated it to the Bob Moog Foundation Archives in 2009. The tape has since been restored and transferred to a digital format. 

The Abominatron was the name given by Moog to his first prototype of the Moog Modular, the first commercially available synthesizer and a historic instrument that established the foundations of analogue synthesis as we know it. 

The instrument was based around a modular design made up of two voltage-controlled oscillators, a voltage-controlled amplifier, an envelope generator and a keyboard. In the recording, Moog jokingly refers to his invention as the "Abominatron", telling Deutsch, "Before I begin to show you the modular components that I’m gonna send you, Herb, I thought I’d play a little bit on the Abominatron here. 

"Doesn’t sound like much when I play it," he continues. "Maybe someone with more musicianship and imagination can get some good things out of it."

The tape will be aired during The Sounds of Innovation, an event taking place at the Moogseum in Asheville, North Carolina, on March 29th. There are only 20 tickets available. 

The event will also feature an introductory reading by Executive Director Michelle Moog-Koussa from Bob’s biography Switched On: Bob Moog and the Synthesizer Revolution.

Find out more on the Bob Moog Foundation's website.

Matt Mullen
Tech Editor

I'm the Tech Editor for MusicRadar, working across everything from artist interviews to product news to tech tutorials. I love electronic music and I'm endlessly fascinated by the tools we use to make it. When I'm not behind my laptop keyboard, you'll find me behind a MIDI keyboard, carefully crafting the beginnings of another project that I'll ultimately abandon to the creative graveyard that is my overstuffed hard drive.

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