Friday, 30 December 2011

Carl Palmer & Moog?

Someone over on Matrixsynth thinks perhaps Carl Palmer used some of the Moog drum modules featured in this post post on the Brain Salad Surgery album / tour, which is a very interesting development:

"via Suit & Tie Guy: "I believe this is one of the four machines built for the famous 1969 'Jazz In The Garden at MOMA' concert. after the show it was repackaged and sold to Eric Siday.

"it's possible and likely that these modules were also built for Carl Palmer's drum rig for the Brain Salad Surgery album. based on the panel controls it would seem reasonable to assume this. it would be great if someone close to Carl would find out if this is the case."

"Additional note via Suit & Tie Guy: "By 'these modules' I meant 'they pulled the films out and made a few for Carl as well' as opposed to the idea that Carl owned these pieces, which he did not."

"Update: turns out Carl Palmer's drum rig was not Moog but custom built.  If anyone has more info on it, feel free to comment or shoot me an email via the email icon on the bottom right. According to this post he did have a MOOG 1130 Drum Controller, but no sign of it in the following video:

Carl Palmer Showing Off His Drums-10-21-73-Aquarius"


  1. From notes to 2004 reissue of Brain Salad CD (which, by the way, was just an arm length from me lying on the top of rythm machine):

    Another innovation was the use of electronic drums, which Carl Palmer also used for the first time on Brain Salad Surgery. "It was very exciting to record at the time," says Palmer. "It gave me a chance to record timpani and tubular bells and use my electronic drums, which I hadn't used up until that point because they were invented specifically for that record. We brought in a guy named Rick Rose to develop and build them for us. At the time it was trial and error situation. Nick did a good job although the sounds were pretty primitive at the time. I did, however, manage to blend the acoustic and electronic sound of the drums by placing two mics inside the drum shells, one of which would trigger the drum synthesizer, which was the size of a cigar box. I managed to have what is now the pioneering sound of MIDI."

  2. hey good work. so its not a moog then!

  3. Made a typing error. Nick Rose/Nicholas Rose is correct name.

    Some details on Palmer's collaboration both with Moog and Rose can be found in this article from 1974 I linked in my nickname.

  4. I always thought that BSS has drum synthesis on it. I'd certainly never heard the likes of those sounds way back when. At least it has the dignity to sound synthetic. Woe betide the day that Linn thought that acoustic samples triggered digitally were a good thing. Actually, woe betide the day that anyone thought that sampling, period, was a good thing. It all went off the rails at that point, methinks. Sure, Fast + Gabriel used it creatively, but for every one of them there were 1000 hacks.