Summary

The Polymoog is undoubtedly unique. It is either loved or despised for what it is, but there is no way of getting away from the fact that it does have a very distinctive character and quirky sound. It has been described as "thin sounding" to which my response will always be…

 

 

"Have you experienced Vox Humana blasting out over a PA system with nothing more than an MXR phaser pedal in tow?" If you attended a Gary Numan show between 1979 and 1981 your answer would be a resounding yes! The bass rumble you can get by holding down the bottom E, tweaking the bass control and adjusting the oscillator tuning (beat) is phenomenal. Nothing else sounds like one and certainly nothing else looks like it either!

If I had to put my hand on my heart and categorise its sound I would describe it as a kind of string machine with a haunting almost spooky vocal quality which, with a bit of tweaking, (especially the sample and hold) can produce some very surprising results. Overall, the Polymoog is a sadly maligned instrument that doesn't deserve the opprobrium that has become attached to its name. Perhaps it is simply nostalgia that makes me so obsessed with it but it's definitely one of those instantly identifiable sounds from the seventies like a Solina String Ensemble, a Mellotron or a thump hiss beat box. In an age of digital sterility, I find myself grinning each time I hear it, probably because of its limitations than in spite of them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An incredibly rare event. A Polymoog 203a and Polypedal that were found in a warehouse in the USA that was being demolished. The units had been there for 24 years, still in their original packaging, unsold and unplayed.

The items were auctioned on Ebay and went to a Japanese collector for $ 3,400 (£ 1,880) - the highest price ever seen for a "second-hand" Polymoog to date.