Lambchop’s Ryan Norris On The Moog MF-105M MuRF Pedal

Lambchop’s first release in nearly four years, Mr. M (Merge) is a thoughtful interweaving of music, portraiture and feeling. With song titles such as “Gone Tomorrow” and “The Good Life (Is Wasted),” the 11-track album—dedicated to the late, great Vic Chesnutt—explores the messy-yet-universal emotions of love, loss and the minutiae of everyday life. The CD packaging is full of Wagner’s painted black-and-white portraits of young men dressed for formal occasions; he turned to portraiture as solace after Chesnutt’s 2009 overdose. Lambchop will be guest editing all week. Check out our recent feature on the band.

Norris: My musical world would be a very different place without this particular piece of gear. MuRF stands for Multiple Resonance Filter Array. According to the Moog Music website, it “combines an 8 band array of resonant filters with a pre-programmed Animation section.” In simpler terms, it’s a filter/step sequencer and a great way to dress up just about any sound. You can give polyrhythmic complexity to a drum machine by adding rhythms that cut across the basic beat, filter strings or horns or turn something like a simple combo organ into a more complex synthesizer-like instrument. One of my favorite things to do with it is tape down keys on my Ace Tone Phenix Top-3 or Moog Opus-3 and run that signal to the MuRF to create arpeggiator-like sequencer patterns that can then serve as the basis for a larger composition. I wouldn’t be without it.

Video after the jump.