Whether they are a gear nerd or a gear noob, the type of gear an artist uses has a huge impact on their signature sound. In this regular series called My Gear, Noisegate picks the brains of exciting and diverse artists for a behind-the-scenes scoop on their favourite piece of music gear. 

Edward Richards has been simmering away in the Melbourne techno scene for the last couple of years, putting out tracks and getting behind the turntables at some of Melbourne’s best techno parties. Earlier in 2018, Richards put out a slick 2-track EP of driving hypnotic techno called Arketype,  with a really nice, deep sonic character. So we reached out to see what bit of kit he’s been loving lately.

So, what’s your favourite piece of gear and why do you reckon it’s awesome?
I really love my Sherman Filterbank Compact. It has exactly the same circuitry as the regular unit, just a smaller form factor. It’s a really unpredictable machine and adds a lot of character to anything that I feed into it. It’s essentially a distortion unit that has 2 filters that you can either run in parallel or in sequence. In addition it has a lot of modulation options. The original unit can be heard on a lot of classic ’90s techno records.

Ed In the studio with his Filterbank Compact and Elektron RYTM

How do you incorporate it into your setup?
It’s my go-to for adding grit and warmth to my mix, I really like feeding my modular and drum machine through it. Modulating the filter cutoff with its onboard LFO really adds a lot of movement to static sounds. As the music that I make is very stripped back, movement is very important to maintain interest.

What makes you keep coming back to this piece of gear?
I guess it has a lot to do with simplicity, it doesn’t take much to get an original sounds out of it. A simple melody fed through it can turn into a warped bassline or a wall of noise.

Any tricks to using it you’re willing to share?
In addition to being a filterbank it also has an inbuilt noise generator, this is activated when nothing is plugged into the input. I’ve been pairing this with a reverb pedal to create drones and soundscapes.

What’s in the foreseeable future for you?
Recently I’ve been collaborating with another Melbourne producer called JXTPS. I’m a massive fan of his releases on Planet Rhythm and am very happy with the tracks we’ve been working on together so far. Hopefully we’ll be able to share them in the coming months.

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