MC909 meets Studio Factory Virtual Analogue Modular Synth

A simple patch and run through monotrons and MC909

Roland MC909 and Artwonk realtime control widgets

Self generative Artwonk random walk module fires random notes on the Roland MC909 with analogue Monotrons used as well for audio input via velocity pads on the MC909. The random note patterns can also so be altered and controlled using widgets and buttons set up on Artwonk as seen in this video, to create some unusual and strange sounds and note patterns in realtime. It loosens up the standard tight sequencing patterns of a normal sequencer that usually obeys commands from the composer. It allows interesting freedom from constraint. This setup can be infinitely expanded (at least as far as the CPU can handle the Artwonk modules) and is a powerful modular programme used together the MC909. In fact the developer of Artwonk, John Dunn had analogue modular synthesis in mind when building Artwonk over a 30 year period by basing his ideas on the modular synthesiser. The programme is free to download now, but originally had a couple of hundred quid price tag when it first came out, but sadly due to John's deteriorating eyesight, he stated he was unable to further develop the software and thus he simply decided to give it away at no cost. Whether or not it will ever be developed further down the line is still not known, but it's certainly an interesting and powerful program especially when also used with graphics and hardware synths.

Artwonk meets the Monotrons 1

Artwonk triggers the Roland MC909 velocity pads whilst the Monotrons are connected to the MC909 audio in (velocity pads control).

Riot in London - Monotron chords strings testing 11 feb 2018

Its quite a challenge to get musical aspects out of Monotrons due to the ribbon size, but if you mod it CV gate or midify them it expands their possibilties enormously. In this video, i am using the three monotrons linked up by audio with each other and running them into the MC909 audio in and the notes played via Midi keyboard then into a looper. Excuse the spaniel dog hair on the monotron. It gets everywhere. Its not my hair. I am attempting here to create sort of string and pad sounding sounds from scratch and treating all three monotrons as if it is one intergral synth with 4x oscillators. A lot of droning goes on however due to tuning and detuning of the oscillators, I'm afraid due to the nature of analogue synthesis in general. You can make several layers of sound on the looper without to much of a loss in sound quality. I finish it off using the pocket operator drum synth added. There also is a way you can re-route the looper into monotrons for refiltering the sound for more interesting stuff. A slow bulld up of layers and adjustments to sound is the main thing here, but all using the MIDI controller arpegiattor to get some notes out there. Then I can detune the oscilators into a chord then loop it. Layering can then continue. Some interesting screaming lead synth sounds can be made here as the sound slowly morphs. With this setup there are a of different combinations, so in a way making a small micro sized modular sort of system including adding ADSR and filtering, using the looper to automate some of these functions. I forgot to say about a small mod i did with these monotrons,and it was dispensing with battery power altogether and connecting them up to 3V mains adapters each one individually. Hence the wires leading out from the battery compartments.

Quick test play of Monotrons into audio in on MC909

Monotrons audio out to MC909 audio in and played via akai midi controller. Gritty analog sound from MS20 filters

Monotron into MC909 Audio input test

Here we test out the three Monotron analogue ribbon synths Monotron, the Duo and Delay with effects units, a loop pedal and connecting them into the audio input on the MC909 groovebox sampler set to velocity pads. Pocket Operator drum machine provides the beats.

The importance of post processing

The importance of post processing when you can't get the signal to stream live, yet why not record it live, and either leave it in its raw state, or reprocess some effects like lighting. I like to use Magic visualizer in order to further enhance the result. And this can be done in real-time using MIDI as your controller.

In studio January 8 - 2018

Quick jam sesh

EDM live test - post process

Here we post process a live video using Magic visualisations after live recording in OBS streaming encoder.

Riot in London - ANS spectral synth live demo of photo Image converted into Sound


Published on 15 Mar 2017
In this video we see a photo loaded into the ANS spectral synthesiser and processed further into audible sound. An image like this one can be processed in the free GIMP graphics program first if you like, in order to get the best effect out of the ANS. If an image is white, or bright, then ANS will see this as sort of transparent and will allow light throughout the image, hence nearly all tones will sound and it will come out as white noise or similar. There are over 700 tones in ANS, so that is a lot of sound coming out at once, hence the white noise effect. But by creating a black "ink" background in an image or transparent alpha etc. and making the image appear as an "etching", this will enhance the sound a lot. This sound was was then routed into the audio input of the Roland MC909 where the sound can be played up and down the scale using the MC909 pads or the MIDI connected keyboard. A tool brush was also crudely made from the image in ANS by selecting a portion of the image and making a brush tool. This was used to draw an image in another new project. A midi keyboard can be used to play and draw notes in the ANS. There was a problem with that particular method when I used it, probably down to me needing re configure my MIDI set up with the ANS better. But for audio in on the MC909, no problems. For more great little tutorials on this go to Alexander Zolotov's website at http://warmplace.ru/soft/ans/

Riot in London - Virtual A.N.S.spectral synth demo - studio video 9 March 2017

Published on 9 Mar 2017
Here is a basic intro to the ANS spectral synthesiser used by Riot in London in some of the music. The original ANS was built in the Soviet Union and completed in 1958. There is only one and that in in a museum in Moscow and still being used by musicians interested in it. The Virtual ANS used in this video is a software version of the original. Here, the audio output is fed into the MC909 audio input. Apologies for some of the shoddy camera work being a bit shaky but it is all done in real-time which is want I want to demonstrate. More detailed information on this excellent program and on the original ANS synthesiser can be found via a couple of links I have left on here.

ANS synthesizer on Wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ANS_syn...

The Virtual ANS software program used in this video http://www.warmplace.ru/soft/ans/

Riot in London - Artwonk-ANS experiment video1 studio


In this video, the MC909 is being played using the Algorithmic Arts generative music production program call Artwonk and connected to the MC909 via MIDI input. Also connected to the MC909 is the Virtual ANS spectral synth via audio input and run through a couple of effect units on the MC909. The large screen shows three random images in random order with random effect applied via the Artwonk generative program in sync with the notes being played. Artwonk is a very flexible program with many various clocks and modules that can be combined for a wide variety of purposes. It is very good for real time control over visuals and sound, thus very good in a live setting. John Dunn is the inventor of this particular program. He worked for Atari for many years and worked a lot using analogue modular synthesisers. With this program, the workings of modular synths are used. The program used to be commercially sold, but now it is free to download, since John lost his sight a couple of years ago and is unfortunately not currently in a position to further develop his program. What you see in this particular video barely scratches the surface of the program's capabilities. A few more such videos will be added, hopefully with improved quality

Riot in London - "X Pulse" live studio test visuals



Published on 28 Feb 2017
A bit of live improvised tech house by Riot in London entitled "X-Pulse" was chucked into this video for another visuals test using the Magic visuals program, using MIDI and audio input control for real time and automated control over visuals being projected. Great program for live real time use. Original music track can be found on the Elektronik Dance album by Riot in London. The original video graphics can be found on the same playlist on this channel. Basically, that same video is being further manipulated in realtime in this video using the Magic software.

Riot in London - "Slow Burn" live studio visuals test variation 2

A variation test in visuals and lighting to earlier test version of 23 February. Aspect ratio was messed up by me when rendering in Blender video sequence editor, hence its looks wider on x - axis but narrow on the y- axis, but since this is a test only, I can let this slide this time. Again Slow Burn performed live with slight variations on yesterdays version, hence this makes live interaction with sequencers and synths a real delight as no two versions are ever exactly the same.

Riot in London -"Slow Burn" live studio video1




Live free tekno track "Slow Burn" by Riot in London played live with improvised vocals on the spot and experimenting with live visuals in the studio with potential for live use with the right video projector. Camerawork is rough, but the i-phone doesn't do a bad job for a narrow view. Quality is rough though, due to post editing in movie maker and convert to wmv format.  But a bit of dirt and grid never hurt and this was indeed the first take for this video and just decided to let it go as it is. Hopefully will be working on more of this stuff.



Riot in London - "PsyTrance" - new experimental visuals



Published on 20 Mar 2016

A freshly made experimental visual to go with PsyTrance by Riot in London. Visuals were made in Blender Game Engine with real time control via the keyboard. Full MIDI control is being worked on. But there are plenty of choices for real time visual control via the keyboard. Basically, it is an image projected in 3D with animated transitions, zoom and rotation control all which can be controlled in real time. Strobe-like effects are achieved simply by baking to f-curves the music track together with a cube, which when zoomed up close produces the effect.








Riot in London - Converting image to sound on the Virtual ANS Spectral Synthesiser



Here an image is loaded into Virtual ANS and then converted to sound. The Virtual ANS Spectral Synth can be freely downloaded at Warmplace.ru







Riot in London's Virtual ANS Spectral Synth experiment with lines and dots



 Best listened through headphones but are still fine via external speakers.

Published on 22 March 2016
Here lines and dots have been drawn into the sonograph directly from the Virtual ANS Spectral Synth internal tools. The playback of the sound as seen on the video, can be reversed and stopped at any point for analysis. There is MIDI on the Virtual ANS, which means it can be played directly from an external MIDI controller keyboard or other device thus making it a powerful sound creation tool.



Riot in London - "Didgeridoo Live - March 2016"

As from April 2016 we have another album out, this time an experimental one using the didgeridoo and some electronic beats and basslines on some of the tracks.  All have been recorded live in Chatham and Gilllingham using a mobile phone and picking up the street vibes and ambience along the way. Hopefully there will be a few more of these live recordings this year. This album is freely available to download via Bandcamp as a free download or as an individual track download. Simply scroll the list on the right of this page to view and download.
The album can also be listened to fully via the Riot in London Youtube channel at






Best wishes to you all!

Latest albums by Riot in London

Check out the newly available three albums by Riot in London covering 2011-2014. Released in April 2015. They are all free to download via Soundcloud and Bandcamp. Visuals can be viewed via Youtube.  1. "Zone of Alienation", 2. "Elektronik Dance", 3. "The Covers". Best wishes to you all. See you on the streets!

Cover version of" People Are Strange" (The Doors) by Riot in London

Cover version of" People Are Strange" (The Doors) by Riot in London







Also check it out via the link to the tracks page Tracks listing where is can be downloaded via Soundcloud for free.

"I Travel" - Simple Minds - cover version by Riot in London

Cover version by Riot in London of a Simple Minds' 1980 released track  "I Travel" also on their third LP "Empires and Dance"






Check it out on Riot in London tracks page on here http://riotinlondonw1tracks.blogspot.co.uk/ where it can be downloaded for free via Soundcloud

Latest tribute cover version by Riot in London is to David Bowie and his track "Fashion" that was first released in 1980.








Go to Riot in London's  Track list page  to listen and freely download via Soundcloud. 

'Hide U' - Riot in London (cover version)

                                           Originally written and recorded by Kosheen.