As I browsed through the sleeve notes on Moby's albums I noticed that the gear lists documented in the 1995 release Everything Is Wrong are almost identical to his current setup. Could it really be possible that this successful musician had no spare cash to spend on new studio gear during the last four years? "From Everything Is Wrong until now I've bought a vocoder and a new sampler and that's about it. On the one hand I'd love to get a bunch of new equipment, but on the other hand there's something to be said for working with equipment with which I'm comfortable. I'm thinking that at some point I will actually switch over and get a full Pro Tools setup and start doing things more in the computer, but for this record I didn't feel compelled to do that." SYNTHS/KEYBOARDS Casio CZ101.more
During a studio tour with Future Music Magazine, Steve Mac says [@ 11:40] about his Casio CZ-101: “We used this on a track recently, and it was sort of like this really soft Rhodes sounding patch that I used it for. I also found an original rave organ on it. It's quite mad, you can pick up this machines now for next to nothing and you get some really interesting sounds from them. Don't be put off by the name Casio."more
The CZ101 is probably the best known and most appreciated synth in the CZ series by connoisseurs. She’s the little sister of the CZ1000 (which is exactly the same, only bigger) and was designed to compete with the Yamaha DX series, but even within the CZ series she has her own unique charm. Her exotic synthesis was named ‘Phase Distortion’ by those geniuses of anything miniature at Casio, and is not much unlike FM synthesis: where FM alters the Frequency Modulation, Phase Distortion alters the phase (shape) of the waveform. It uses six 8-stage envelopes, three for each of the two oscs: one for the DCO (pitch envelope), a DCW envelope which is comparable with a filter envelope and is responsible for the sound, and an 8 stage DCA envelope, where A stands for Amplifier. Further more she offers a maximum of 8 voice polyphony (or 4 if you use both oscs), it has limited modulation (only Vibrato can be programmed) and there’s no mod wheel. She does have a very nice portamento and she even has noise and / or ring modulation, which is best used to create her infamous metallic sounds. The sound is good and has a distinctive edge, you might recognize it in some of the early detroit techno and chicago house records, as wel as in mid 80’s synthpop. Playing around with the two oscs and their several envelopes will get you quite amazing sounds, sounds that are hard to recreate on your average subtractive synthesizer, digital or analogue. Ofcourse she does sound digital and perhaps even slightly thin or metallic compared to the analogue synths you might wanna try to emulate, but that’s exactly the lovely charm of the CZ101. So, if you get hooked to the CZ101, you will be very happy to know she is 4 parts multi-timbral! Sound-wise, the comparison with FM synthesizers is easily made, and although the Yamaha DX and Casio CZ series were competitors in the mid 80s affordable-digital-synth race (Casio lost) they really do complement each other.more
"Zawinul did not stop at the Wurlitzer and Fender Rhodes electric pianos he used in the 1960s. By the late 1960s he was extending his sonic palette with effects like phase shifters, Echoplexes, wah-wahs and ring modulators, and when synthesizers came on the market he was among the first to buy one (the EMS Putney). The list of synthesizers he has used since then — among them the ARP 2600, Rhodes Chroma, Oberheim Four-voice and Eight-voice, ARP Quadra, Sequential Prophet 5 and Prophet T8, Korg Trident, Oberheim Xpander, Korg VC10 vocoder, Emu Emulator, Casio CZ101, Korg DW8000, DSS1, DSM1 and M1 — reads like a synth museum's treasure list."more
In the video in which Moonlight Matters is taking Future Music Magazine on a tour of his studio, at 1:09:51 he says "Right here I have a small Casio, you have to have a Casio, the CZ-101. It's a really small and cheap synth but it was used in a lot of revolutionary techno songs and early house songs. Very straightforward interface on modulation possibilities. So, again, a good starter synth and also great to use live".more
"Yes, it's more or less a children's toy, but it starred as the tinkly piano noise and half the bass on 'Never Land'. A certain Californian lady ran off with the original unit, but forgot the manual, so she won't have got far (especially with a sack of potatoes down the back of her knickers)."more
this is a really cool entry level phase-distortion synth, the CZ series was Casio's answer to FM digital synths that took over the world in the mid 80s....... like a nastier dx7 that's easier to program.... for some reason I never use it though. For performance the keyboard just doesn't stack up to the DX line, even a chintzy 4 operator DX100 has a better keyboard in my opinion.... and the DX7mk2 just schools it. I don't know if the higher end of the CZ range is any better, but with all tis capable of I wish it were more fun to perform on or that it was just a desktop module.... the size and unplayability relegate it to very casual use these days like my ESQ1 which is equally unique sounding but chintzy.