Korg Wavestate Berlin School Synth Jam

This synth jam, by Thomas Hammer, aka Waveformer, explores using the Korg Wavestate in a Berlin School style.

The live performance was done with a patch/performance called WF Berlin Sternwarte, part of Hammer’s Berlin School and Ambient Construction Kit.

Here’s what Hammer has to say about the technical details:

“The performance uses four layers. Layer A is an arpeggiator, Layer B is a solo instrument, Layer C is an arpeggiated bass and layer D is a pad.

Layer A (arp) and Layer C (bass) use the Multi Filter and morphs between a low pass filter and a band reject (notch) filter using the Pitch Envelope, adding a nice and bouncy attack. For Layer A, I have mapped the Mod Wheel to control how much the Pitch Envelope affects Filter Morph and mapped the joystick to Filter Cutoff, Env amount and Morph amount. During the jam, I felt the need for some racheting, so I added that as I played, using the Step and Shape Sequences to trigger the Filter and Amp Envelopes. See the patch notes in the video for more details.

Layer B (solo) also uses the Multi Filter and morphs between low pass and band reject (notch) using the Pitch Envelope. Changing Pitch Envelope Decay controls how fast the higher frequencies fall off. Filter Envelope Decay is also nice to play around with. And the sample can be changed with the Layer Mod Knob 3/Sample, or just setting Sample Sequence Start position with shift + START.

Layer D (pad) plays through a series of wavesamples with a time sequence with both short and long steps, with random probability. As for the other layers, I use the Multi Filter and morph between a low pass + band pass filter to a band reject (notch) filter. The latter let all the high frequency content from the wavesamples through. The Pitch LFO is set to a random waveform and routed to a gate in the Mod processor, and the output from the Mod Processor controls the Filter Morph amount. the result is a series of bursts of high frequency content at irregular intervals. This is fed through a delay and reverb, and it makes the pad more interesting and unpredictable.

Performance mod knobs:
Knob 1: Layer A (arp) Octave
Knob 2: Layer B (solo) Octave
Knob 3: Layer C (bass) Octave
Knob 4: Layer D (pad) Octave
Knob 5: Layer A (arp) Amp Level
Knob 6: Layer B (solo) Amp Level
Knob 7: Layer C (bass) Amp Level
Knob 8: Layer D (pad) Amp Level

During the jam, i add more wavesamples to the Sample Sequence for both Layer C (bass) and Layer D (pad). A little bit of menu diving (or rather, menu snorkling, as was suggested in one of the Facebook groups) in a live jam.

Sample Sequence for the bass layer
– Enter + Step to solo the step
– Step A1: MS: Wave: Pulse LoFi 250
– Step A2: MS: Wave: Saw Chroma
– Step A3: MS: Wave: Saw Down A2600
– Step A4: MS: Wave: Square A2600
– Step A5: MS: Wave: triangle LoFi
– Step A6: MS: Wave: Wobble Wave
– Step A7: MS: Wave: Ramp MG
– Step A8: MS: Wave: Pulse 10% A2600
– Enter + Step to disable soloing
– Note advance

Sample Sequence for the pad layer
– Enter + Step to solo the step
– Step A1: MS: Syn_WS: Voice Syn
– Step A2: MS: Syn_WS: Magiq 1a
– Step A3: MS: Syn_WS: Synth Pd2
– Step A4: MS: Vox: Pop Ooh
– Step A5: MS: Vox: Choir Whisper F
– Step A6: MS: Vox: Tape Boys Choir
– Step A7: MS: Syn_WS: Spectrum
– Step A8: MS: Syn_WS: Res Wave
– Enter + Step to disable soloing
– Note advance

The audio is recorded to SD card on a Zoom R16 and normalized in Audacity. Video is recorded on iPhoneX. Audio and video is synchronized in DaVinci Resolve 17.”

The track is from Hammer’s new album, which you can preview below:

6 thoughts on “Korg Wavestate Berlin School Synth Jam

  1. I love the Wavestate but don’t understand why Korg used such cheap plastic knobs. It’s a $750 instrument, for goodness sake!

    1. Lmao you guys are never happy on this site.

      The reason it costs 800 is because it DOESNT have premium knobs.

      If you want a real complaint… lets talk about the lack of aftertouch on that keybed ?

  2. I’ve released a new Waveformer album on Bandcamp that includes this jam, plus an additional four tracks with more than 2 hours of music in the style of Ambient and Berlin School of Electronic Music. Composed and performed live on a Korg Wavestate synthesizer in one take, using just one custom Wavestate patch per track. No DAWs were harmed in the production of this album ;-). https://youtu.be/G1JcyvfqP2c

  3. Love me some Waveformer and really appreciate the technical and musical detail he provides in the descriptions of a lot of his videos. Going to Bandcamp now (to order next Bandcamp Friday)!

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