Synthesizer Etudes

Including one sedate aural terrarium

Eric Kuehnl has released a second collection of short modular synthesizer pieces. It’s titled Modular Etudes — Volume 2 and contains five pieces, ranging from gurgling drones that unfold into what suggests pizzicato strings, to escapades in sound design for what might be a rough draft of a claustrophobic science fiction tale. One hallmark of the pieces is their range of sounds. Most of them contain clearly contrasting elements, like the varied percussion in “Mod_06.11.17” (presumably the titles are dates) and the mix of percussion and an alarm-like presence in “Mod_06.20.17.” Even the set’s most sedate piece, “Mod_07.20.17,” the one that earns the #ambient tag that Kuehnl affixed to the SoundCloud upload, is still quite sonically diverse, a little aural terrarium packed with life forms.

Get the full collection at More from Kuehnl, who is based in Berkeley, California, at

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