Apr 9, 2017
Eric Cheslak is known by almost everyone as 'Rodent', and is one of those Pied Piper folks that draws people into his lair. His current pipe of choice is the modular synthesizer, and he (along with Bana Haffar) put together the Modular on the Spot performance series, which takes modular people, puts them in an outdoor context (generally near the LA river) and gives them a venue to play, share and hang out. It's a powerful thing, and something that has drawn a community together - first in LA, but now all over the world.
Rodent is also a serious composer/player, and his work (which you can taste on his Soundcloud page) is a pretty unique style combo of dark industrial, experimental and idiosyncratic sound design. It's deep and satisfying, and provides an insight into the depth of Rodent himself.
This was an amazing interview because I felt like I really got to see inside the enthusiasm of Rodent and his view of the modular synthesizer as an orchestra, a very personal instrument - and a tool for community building. As he and Bana have been evangelizing both modulars and live performance, we've seen a huge uptick in people's interest and willingness to embrace these systems. And I think it is pretty easy to point to that work as a significant part of the modular explosion we are experiencing now.