Hisashi Saitoh

SOUNDS: Hisashi Saitoh


Hisashi Saitoh: After his major-label debut in 1991 with "GULT DEP" from Victor Entertainment, he has been active in a wide variety of electronic music endeavors. His experience has also led him to be deeply involved with synthesizer development for numerous manufacturers. His publications include "99 DTM Techniques of a Programmer."

Sine Bottom Bass

As basic waveforms, the ARP Odyssey provides sawtooth wave and square wave, plus two switchable types of noise: white and pink. However in the electronic music of today, a sine wave to handle the ultra-low-frequencies has become indispensable. Not to worry. The ARP Odyssey can easily create a sine wave.
To create a sine wave, first cancel all the waveforms in the oscillator section. Then take advantage of the oscillation that occurs when you raise the VCF RESONANCE of the VCF section and lower the VCF FREQ. Next, activate the KYBD CV switch in the filter section and maximize the value so that the pitch of the self-oscillating filter will follow the note you play on the keyboard. Three demo sounds are provided: bottom bass with a bit of sustain produced by slightly increasing the envelope's release, a tight bottom bass with a shortened envelope release, and finally a bottom bass in which the ADSR is sent to the filter to make the pitch fall during the release. By changing the degree of oscillation or the envelope time, you can also create variations of this sound that are similar to a synth drum.


80's Seq Bass

When digital sequencers appeared in the 1980s, tight and precisely=sequenced synth bass lines became very popular. With its great-sounding attack, the ARP Odyssey was used to play the sequenced bass in many of these songs. This demo sound uses two sawtooth waves. To create a sense of drive and thickness, the Sync is disabled, and the LFO is used to modulate the pitch of one of them, creating a moving detune effect. An additional sense of attack is created by reducing the decay of the crisp envelope generator. By slightly raising the envelope release, you can give the sound more presence as a bass, making it contribute to the overall groove of the song. Since the ARP Odyssey has two envelope generators, ADSR and AR, you can obtain interesting results by using different envelope settings for the VCF and the VCA.



To an extent that you would not believe likely from its compact body, the ARP Odyssey allows a degree of complex patching that rivals that of a modular synthesizer, making it possible to create a wide range of sound effects. In particular, the sample & hold (S/H) function was superior to those of its competitors at the time. In this demo sound, the LFO REPEAT and AUTO REPEAT switches are activated, so sound is produced even if you don't press a key. (Of course, you can also press a key to produce sound.) First, activate the S/H switch for both oscillators and maximize the value. Next, in the S/H MIXER section, activate the NOISE GEN to obtain a simple S/H. While using LFO FREQ to control the speed at which sound is produced, and make the filter oscillate. Finally in the filter section, activate S/H and raise the value so that the filter envelope is applied to each individual note, producing a rhythmic and unique S/H sound.


Ring Mod SE

In addition to S/H, the potential for creative sound effect synthesis is enhanced by the ring modulator—found standard on the ARP Odyssey. The ring modulator generates metallic-sounding timbres by multiplying two oscillators. In the AUDIO MIXER section, activate the RING MOD switch, raise the value, and detune the pitch of the two oscillators to instantly generate complex metallic sounds. (Try completely lowering all of the oscillator volumes themselves.) In this demo sound, I manually modulate the Oscillator 2 COARSE setting. While doing so, I also applied PORTAMENTO to add a glide effect to the unique metallic sound. Finally, I used HPF CUTOFF FREQ to drastically cut the low region, and slightly raised the envelope release to create this percussive metallic sound often used in Conny (Konrad) Plank's productions.