The journey begins

An Interesting patch that could turn into something usable… AM Modulation is a great tool for extracting formant-like sounds because of the way it “simply” produces sidebands with frequencies at carrier+mod and carrier-mod. Ignoring the negative component (in this case it’s too low even to hear sometimes!) we are left with the positive component + fundamental (the carrier) and some extra frequencies due to the imperfect ratios dialed by hand. All of this sounds kinda human-like! I’m using my trusty Buchla 208c but I’m sure it could work as well with any AM synth.

The patch: set the carrier and the modulator roughly a major 6th apart, usually the carrier is the lower one. This should be your lowest formant imitating an Italian “U” (Eng. “oo”), from that slowly increase the pitch of the modulator looking for the other vowels! It helps to gate the carrier so you can shape its volume and sculpt the attack and decay of the sound. It will immediately resemble a human pronouncing a vowel-like sound, while also speeding up the vowel hunting process.