Over The Rooftops
Clouds around the skyscrapers, your battles are invisible to those below. Your mind is tough, but it is not free.
Track notes: A live recording again after many takes (but all in one session).
A DnB urban (I guess) style track, fast-paced and exciting (I hope). I wanted something that reminded you of a futuristic cyber setting, and I also wanted to incorporate some gritty, dirty sounds. I also wanted to not do a straight up four on the floor track.
I spent a lot of time with throwaway ideas this week, including trying to make Andromeda patches that didn’t suck, and in the end I ended up not using any of them.
I also spent a bit of time learning how to get nice sounds out of the Future Retro 777 and figuring out the best knob-turning to get good stuff.
The new setup doesn’t involve software sequencers, so I have to now start keeping song parts in my head. I haven’t yet figured out how to do good chord changes in this setup yet so these styles of songs work well thus far until I can figure it out.
One thing I’ve also realized is that doing stuff live is really time consuming. It’s not really principled for me and I discover a lot of things by accident, like how song pacing should go and when I should introduce new instruments. One thing about doing live takes is that I’m starting to get more of a sense of how song structures should go to maintain interest. While synth jams are cool, as a listener I often find myself getting bored with the 16-bar repeated sequence so I try to add enough elements to keep people hooked.
I do mix in software in the end and add software effects, mostly compression, EQ, and reverb.
Here’s a short rundown of the setup I have going:
Kilpatrick Carbon. This is a 6-track sequencer. The tracks are mapped as:
1. Nord Lead voice 1
2. Nord Lead voice 2
3. Nord Lead voice 3
4. Nord Lead voice 4, which is routed to the EXT in of the Roland TR-8.
5. Dave Smith Mono Evolver
6. Alesis A6 Andromeda
The Carbon’s synced up to:
Future Retro 777
Both of those have their own onboard sequencers. (The Mono Evolver does too but I find it hard to use.)
I control the Carbon Kilpatrick with a Linnstrument using MIDI IN.
Tuesday, Oct 25, 20:30 - 22:30.
Doing more live setups. Today, I’m doing a lot of pattern editing to set up some decent-sounding loops. One thing that’s pretty clear to me after doing this for a bit of time is that I’m actually much faster doing loops and patterns on the computer than on x0x-style sequencers.
Did a lot of sound editing for some whacky effects and an overall song bass.
Carbon: Song Bank 3
Notes: TR-8 Pattern 9
777: Song 1 (plays Pattern 9 A A E G)
Sat, Oct 15:45 - 17:55. Mucking around with more sound design, doing some pattern creation for the track as well. One interesting thing about the sequencer is that it forces me to compose all of my individual parts, but at the same time I have to try to remember where they all appear in the song too. Currently I don’t have chord changes because I don’t have all of my instruments synced up either.
Sat. Oct 22:30 - 23:00. More sound editing.
Sun. Oct 9:00 - 9:30. More sound editing. The andromeda patch I had going was terrible, that thing’s difficult to program
Sun. Oct 10:00 - 12:05. I don’t really have a good workflow yet. Still storing a lot of patterns in my head.
Some software effects. I’m kind of tired, I think I spent a lot of time working with sounds rather than on the composition.
Total time: 8h 10m. I think this must be the longest I’ve spent on a WeeklyBeats song.
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