Moog has debuted a new synth called the Matriarch, which will be built and available to play with on-site at its Moogfest in Durham, North Carolina. The Matriarch is a patchable semi-modular analog synth that follows in the footsteps of previous Moog releases, like the Mother-32 and Grandmother.
As with other synths the company has put out, Moog says the Matriarch doesn’t require any patching to make cool sounds, but if you want to dive in, there’s an array of different kinds of synthesis modules to connect together at your fingertips just above its 49 keys.
It’s got the same retro aesthetic that Moog has been leaning into as of late, not just with this series, but other synths like the Sirin (which it introduced at this year’s NAMM show). Naturally, bits of the Matriarch are based on Bob Moog’s original circuit designs: Minimoog oscillators, a CP3 module mixer, 904A module filters, 911 module envelopes, 902 module VCAs, and an analog delay that closely resembles the MF-104M and 500-series effects.
The Matriarch boasts four of these analog oscillators. It can run in mono, duo, and four-note paraphonic modes, and from there, sounds can be endlessly manipulated. There’s a 256-step sequencer, an arpeggiator, and the oscillators can be stacked to create a “massive four-oscillator mono synth.” Sounds can be further shaped with any of the modules, which include dual envelope generators, a full-range LFO, stereo analog delays, and stereo VCAs, with a total of 90 patch points across the front and back. It also comes with pitch bend and mod wheels, variable glide, an expression pedal to CV out, and a sustain pedal in.
This could certainly be used as a standalone instrument, but it’s built to also be a processor for external sound sources and be a front end keyboard to expand your Eurorack modular system.
If you visit Moog’s website, there’s a bunch of sample sounds that show off what the Matriarch is possible of producing, which ranges from rich wobbled leads to crunchy, brash bass to washed out spacey trails. There’s also this gorgeous 15-minute soundscape to get lost in if you want a full Matriarch immersion:
More details on the Moog Matriarch are on the company’s website, and there you can also preorder one now for $1,999, with expected shipping in summer of this year. And, while that is a sizable price, you do get a lot for your dollar.