Demon MonKeys

This was a cheap Kawasaki keyboard with lots of rhythms, sound effects, and sounds. It was handed to me by dAs (of Bigg Citee Orchestrax) so that I would mangle it for a show dAs and Ninah were doing in New Mexico in November of '05.

This is what it became. I added a multi-turn pot (the kind with 3 ball bearings in it to get real fine-tuned resistance range—I didn't test the range...), an optical resistor (under the glass blob on the left) with a switch to activate optical, and painted it two-tone black and red.

With the pot, the wide pitch range is from realllll slowwww and grainy to very fast and crashy-noisy. When it crashes noisily, you can still play noisy notes on the keyboard. Cool!

With the optical resistor engaged, you can use a blinkyblinky LED to pitch-sequence the sounds.

The Back of the Beast.

I am really happy with the way this keyboard turned out. The paintjob is great and the bends, tho very simple, are quite dynamic and versatile, which makes it a very playable keyboard. It's great to make instruments for other people who can actually play them (I don't really "play" any instruments. I make them and make awful noises with them).

I'll be making more keyboards for people. It seems like a good way to get circuit bent instruments into musician's hands who may never have had a chance to play one.

Here's a detail of the label on the back. I masked off the original to make this absurd statement. The original was some blather about making sure to switch it to "PLAY" mode, as "DEMO" mode was for demonstration purposes only...



Here are some extra special pages featuring Don Joyce of Negativland.

Completed: 10/20/05
Dimensions: Appx. 18" long
Current Status:

Lying in a pile of other musical detritus in dAs' studio in Alameda, CA. It is picked up once in a while to be coaxed into giving up its precious noises.

Audio Bits:

On New Year's Eve '05, dAs and Ninah had some nice folks over to make some evil noise to bring in the new year. There, Blevin Blectum had a chance to play with the Demon MonKeys and this is what she was able to issue: blevinsynth.mp3

I had a chance to play the Demon myself before I delivered it to dAs and Ninah's trembling hands, at a show in Los Angeles, the Bend This! show at the Il Corral, October 22nd, 2005. Here's a track that features the Demon MonKeys a bit: RightAnglesToTheWire.mp3