Prog rock, sci-fi, and more synthesizers than humans should be allowed. That’s what true geeks are made of. Lest you think we mean “geek” as anything other than the highest compliment, these ingredients also make an enviable musical career — if your name is Erik Norlander. His varied projects include his own band the Rocket Scientists, his work with prog chanteuse Lana Lane (also his wife), and most recently, Roswell Six’s debut CD Terra Incognita: Beyond the Horizon, with lyrics penned by Kevin J. Anderson, coauthor of the posthumous sequels to Frank Herbert’s epic Dune novels. In August, Erik also appeared with Keith Emerson at the opening of the exhibit Waves of Inspiration: the Legacy of Moog at the Museum of Making Music (museumofmakingmusic.org) in Carlsbad, California.
We didn’t find a tank of spice gas at House Norlander, but we suspect that the setup above could call a sandworm, and maybe even fold space. At lower left is a Minimoog Voyager. At right rear is a chopped Hammond C-3 holding up a Korg CX-3 and small Fatar MIDI controller. At right foreground, we have (top to bottom) an Alesis Ion virtual analog synth next to a vintage Minimoog D, a Roland JX-8P next to a Moog Rogue, an Alesis Fusion workstation next to a Roland VK-8M organ module (you can never have too many things making Hammond sounds), an Alesis Andromeda analog synth, and a Yamaha SY99.
It’s that incredible modular in the middle you really want to know about, though, isn’t it? The leftmost rack includes four Oberheim SEM modules (the white squares), and up top, two Speck Xtramix line mixers to bring everything in the room together. The main rack houses Erik’s customized, 1967-vintage Moog Modular — with 22 oscillators(!) and six filters, let’s just say he isn’t worried about polyphony. For a complete list of all the modules in the rack, look for this story at keyboard mag.com . To learn more about Erik, visit eriknorlander.com