It’s a game-changer, it’s the one that will revolutionise the industry and is what we’ve all been waiting for. It’s some serious teasing from Expressive E who has collaborated with Haken Audio on some new piece of expressive equipment – but they won’t tell us what.
Expressive E has released a video with all sorts of synth and keyboard artists talking with a fair bit of genuine wonderment at this new groundbreaking expressive interface they’ve come up with.
From what I can gather it’s definitely a keyboard-based controller of some kind. The Haken Continuum is a controller that doesn’t have any individual mechanical keys but has notes marked out across their pressure-sensitive material surface. Expressive E, on the other hand, has been all about the style, the physicality and interaction with their wobble block controller. Looking closer at the image they’ve released it gives the impression that they’ve followed the Continuum to some degree in not having raised piano keys, but what else is in there? Are they faders or controller sliders above the keys? Or actually is it just light reflecting of the edge of the raised black keys?
In another image from the video there does appear to be individual white and black keys that are slightly offset from each other.
So what do we think? With all the wobbly MPE expression out there I find it quite telling that it hasn’t really found its way to the mainstream. For many keyboard players and musicians playing the notes is enough and even using a mod wheel or pitch bend is a bit of a stretch. But for the “players” and for our own curiosity this is a potentially exciting product put together by two very competent and innovative companies.