An image of the Volca Drum was leaked just before Christmas along with the Volca Modular. Korg has now officially released the details on the Volca Drum and although it joins the Volca Kick and Volca Beats as a third box of percussion it’s also very unique.
The sounds are from a six-part DSP synth engine that generates waveforms that are then wave folded and overdriven to add overtones and distortion and then routed through a waveguide resonator effect to add the fizz. The sound reminds me of the Noise Engineering Basimilus Iteritas Alter which is a very flouncy name for a digital noise making Eurorack module.
The DSP engine produces analog modelled waveforms of sine, sawtooth and noise. Each of the six parts has two layers, each layer can choose from five waveforms, and three types of pitch modulator and envelope. You can then add some bit reduction, wave fold the sound to add complexity and beef it up with overdrive. The effects section features a physically modelled waveguide resonator that can be a cylinder like a drum body or a string to add that metallic sound. Three knobs – Decay, Body and Tune – give you control over how it all pans out – these are the fun knobs to play with.
As is traditional in Volca boxes the sequencer is a 16-step pattern chaining sequencer with a wide range of parameter automation. A total of 69 different parameters can be memorised per step making for a hugely creative playground of sound in motion. There are peformance features built in like Active Step that lets you jump around the sequence, and a Slice function to drop in fills and rolls.
Volca Drum also features a pair of randomise functions that can be fed into the layers or sequencer performance features.
Finish it all off with a natty LCD display and you’ve got a lot of percussive fun in the Volca Drum. Should be available soon for £149.
- Korg Volca Drum webpage.