Drum machines. They’re predictable. So much so that the biggest controversy about Roland’s high-profile entry into the market with AIRA was whether they should remake the 808/909 or remake the 808/909 as analog.

Enter Metasonix. They would like to make the differentiation point of drum machines whether you still have your ass or not once you’ve heard them.

And so, we see the D-2000, the long-awaited (long-dreaded?) successor to the D-1000, but, say Metasonix, more extreme. (“Tweaked,” “maximized,” and “pushed.”)

How would you describe the sound? Absolutely terrible. (You know, nicely horrible. I mean, probably not in a way most of us would spend money on, but… well, read on, as we ponder just who would. Because they must be interesting.)

Not everyone can actual create products in a way that could be termed trolling – and still sell them. This is that kind of product.

Basically, what you get is three tunable drums made from the resonance of tube-driven bandpass filters. Those are tuned with vactrol photoresistors – a resistive circuit that combines an LED and a photoresistor. Drive controls give you overdrive. Then you add two noise cymbals, also using tubes (to gate the sound). You can also link one of the noise circuits to one of the pitched drums, for a “snare”-ish… thing.

And then if that weren’t dirty enough, the whole lot of them is fed into a tube preamp.

The original D-1000 had its own sequencer. Here, the focus is on sound: there’s literally a hole left for the sequencer you want. (8HP lets you add Eurorack or something else; they’ve got a couple of suggestions.)

Also interesting: you can feed anything as a pulse, or use an audio signal as the trigger. You can output that squashed tube-overdriven main out, but also the individual drums (essential). And there’s, naturally, CV ins.


It is “rude and immoral.” Metasonix amusingly concede that they’ve had customers think their gear is broken – sorry, that’s how it’s meant to sound.

I mean, of course, all of this is ridiculous. The unit will set you back US$1895 – and that’s if you can buy it at all. It’s exclusively at Big City Music. (Someone, somewhere here in Europe will buy one and pay the import taxes – you go, person.)

It’s almost as though the whole product is an insult to … sort of everyone. Not taking the hint, Synthtopia commenters jump onboard to savage the unit as a painful waste of money. (Though, to anyone saying this sounds like farts, I want sound samples of your farts.)

They’re missing the point. It is a painful waste of money.

And it’s completely brilliant. It’s nice to see Metasonix’s insanity back in the game.


Big City – D-2000

It’s a limited run, so … yeah, obviously, this is a limited run.

I mean, you really actually should probably buy an Octatrack and then just get some distortion pedals – they’re just US$1299 at Big City, and while they’re not getting Overbridge, they’re beautiful music machines. Or even get a volca sample. Or, probably, just about anything and a distortion pedal.

But, then, should is not a word that can even be applied to this machine. Immoral is right. And I’m glad it exists. And to anyone crazy enough to buy it, I want to meet you. I … just might keep a cell phone on me and have my escape vehicle ready with some backup. But don’t take it personally. Seriously, let’s hang in your … studio … a bit. Also, you’re buying lunch: you can afford it.