ALM Busy Circuits ASQ-1 delivers old-skool Roland SH-101-style sequencing

Some people just can't let go of the past and despite all the advancement in musical arranging and sequencing – just look at the complexity and power of the modern DAW – they perhaps hanker for a little old-skool flavour…

After all, the Roland TB-303 Bassline (with sequencer built-in) was so hard to program that it accidentally invented the random-note squidges that defined the acid house genre.

But what of Roland's SH-101 from the same era?

This much loved monosynth – in slab grey, or rare and valuable blue and red flavours – packed its own 100 note sequencer on board, allowing owners without other hardware to program up a bassline or lead riff and let the machine take the strain.

The results were always simple but never nothing less than arresting.

So for those blinded by the possibilities of the modern DAW who want to bring a little SH-101-style simplicity to their Eurorack kit, ALM Busy Circuits have just the machine for you.

ALM Busy Circuits

(Image credit: ALM Busy Circuits)

We first saw the ASQ-1 at Superbooth and are delighted to see it finally be released. This diminutive box, while copying the ease-of-use step-time sequencing of the SH-101, aces it in one major respect. The ASQ-1 is capable of running two note sequences simultaneously – potentially driving two separate synths, a lead and a bass, say – and FOUR trigger sequences – ideal for providing percussion and drums.

Depending on your minimalist leanings therefore, this one box may be all you need to drive your whole track.

All the programming happens via the chunky computer keyboard-style buttons which also feature LEDs to show step lengths and pattern and note positions. Plus, during playback, all-important track mutes can be performed with button combinations. Neat.

The ALM Busy Circuits ASQ-1 is available now for $365 USD/368€.

More information here: ALM Busy Circuits

MusicRadar Team

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