Chris Carter Chemistry Lessons: Tutti Box v1.0 (5 Oscillators, 2FX Units, Step Sequencer,….Beauty!)

Late last year, fans of Throbbing Gristle waited with anticipation to catch a glimpse and performance of the legendary band. During preparation for what was supposed to be a series of Throbbing Gristle gigs, Chris Carter and Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson decided to create many of their own instruments. Some of these handmade instruments looked stunning and made some very brilliant sounds.

The reality was that the scheduled tour would not happen at all. Genesis P. Orridge, at some point, decided to end his participation in the forthcoming shows. So, from this point on, the band would cease to exist as we knew it. Never again will we be treated to the original line-up. Left with the decision to abandon the project and leave many fans with withdrawal symptoms, the remaining members decided to move forward. They came up with the moniker X-TG. The remaining members, Chris Carter, Cosey Fanni Tutti and the late “Sleazy” would play several shows with the new band name. The reception was widespread and positive. This left the possibility for a new collaboration between these artists and the prospects seemed limitless. Sadly, as we now know, Sleazy would pass away after that short tour, leaving fans like me clinging onto everything TG from that point on.

Chris Carter would injure himself during the making of the Tutti Box and even have to be rushed to the hospital in the process. What won’t Chris do in the name of love, art and a chemistry lesson? This is my attempt to add to the archeology of the Chris Carter Chemistry Lessons.

Tutti Box v1.0
Tutti Box open

Contents of video:
Cosey Fanni Tutti using her Tutti Box experimental sound generator for the first time… “features small cameo by our cat Dexter… “. Five oscillators, two effects units, a step sequencer, a joystick controller, a coil touch controller, an amp & speaker and a front mounted sound activated plasma display. It is powered by 9v PSU.


if you prefer Vimeo, go here.

Excerpt from Chris Carter. For more please go here.

Tutti Box consists of five oscillators. Three of these VCOs are connected in a feedback loop with the output of each affecting the frequency of the next, with a master oscillator modulating the first VCO in the chain. The master oscillator can also be modulated by an 8 step sequencer. The step sequencer cannot be programmed but has various preset patterns – forward, reverse, follow, random etc. The sequencer has a speed control; from zero (no steps) to audio range (in effect it becomes a sixth oscillator).
The fifth VCO is connected to the joystick controller, with the X and Y axis varying the frequency and volume. The joystick oscillator can also be modulated by a small touch sensitive steel coil next to the joystick.

The oscillator bank feeds into two circuit-bent effects units. The first is a multi effect with switchable and variable delay, chorus, phaser, flanger and pitch. This feeds into a digital reverb which has various modes: halls, rooms, springs. The effects chain has a separate feedback loop for introducing distortion and extreme feedback.

The Tutti Box v1.0 is part of the CCCL project: http://chriscarterchemistrylessons.blogspot.com

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