From the makers of the Poly Cinematic and Kickain comes a Eurorack-based MIDI controller that throws out chords, progressions and arpeggiations. Chord Pilot is a modular adventure in MIDI chords.
Update 9/02/23: Chord Pilot is now shipping and available at all good modular shops for £320.
Originally published 7/11/22
It’s quite unusual to have a Eurorack module that only outputs MIDI. While there are a couple of CV inputs the Chord Pilot has a digital brain that speaks the language of MIDI and is looking to connect up to something sympathetic. The obvious companion is the Poly Cinematic; Knobula’s polyphonic synthesizer module and it most certainly is an awesome combination.
Chord Pilot can store 192 chords and kick them out in banks of 8. Chords progressions are delivered like a step sequencer rotating through 8 loaded groups of notes. These notes can be messed with in various ways to widen the range, the spread of the fingers, the favouring of notes, intervals and inversions.
You can stab at the ring of 8 buttons to trigger the chords, or you can latch them and step through them via a CV input. There are three play modes; chord mode, ratchet and arpeggiator. In ratchet mode, it acts more like a strummed chord with the notes sounding very quickly in succession.
There are knobs for things like Scale, Interval and Note Count, which seem obvious enough. But there are less obvious ones like Bias, Modal, Circle and Conform. The demo video and website are not giving too much away at the moment. So we’re going to have to wait until the full details or a manual emerges. Hopefully, I’ll get the chance to try one out with my Poly Cinematic and will undoubtedly make an awesome video all about it!
Chord Pilot looks like an interesting and accessible way of using chords in your modular system. While it is designed for triggering other MIDI-enabled modules or external MIDI synths, you could also patch it through a MIDI-to-CV module if you wanted to get more analogue with it. It could revolutionise your monophonic bleeps and bloops.