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WeeklyBeats.com / Music / laguna's music / Cult of the LCD screen

Cult of the LCD screen

By laguna on February 21, 2016 11:33 pm

Hello Everyone!!!

First, I want to thank you for all the comments, the positive feedback and all that wonderful music! My playlist is now a couple of hours long and growing really fast smile

After owning this famous "oldschool" hardware sampler for 8 straight days, this is what I've been capable of. E Everything you'll hear it's been generated on the E-MU e6400 classic, sequenced via MIDI using Ableton Live 9 and recorded back to the computer straight from the stereo output. No internal FX card on the sampler. Minimum post-production.

By "minimum" I mean: I had to leave my home on Friday afternoon, so everything had to be ready by then. There were some isolated peaks that reached level 0 db but the average output was -6 db, so I applied some slight compression/mastering on the overall stereo track to limit those peaks and gain back those 5-6 db's. Other than that, there were no additional mastering. One major drawback: I was in a real hurry to finish on time so I recorded the whole stereo mix through my Vestax mixing desk USB soundcard (which sucks big time!) so I had 24 bit with 44.100 Khz freq and some UGLY GROUND LOOP which is audible sometimes in the quiet parts.

I really want to re-record the whole mix improving those tiny peaks so I could avoid the compressor, and also plug the sampler without a mixer inbetween (it was a matter of cable lenght and lack of time, mostly).

This one has been a lot of work, and I really mean it. Maybe it's not that good, but I could swear it was a labour of love. I hope not to bore you with a lot of details but I wanted to document the process and share with you fellow producers and musicians.

Almost every sound was taken from vinyl, and I'm not "worried" to cite the sources because I worked really hard on creating new sounds. Everything taken from "the big names" is never longer than 1/8th of a bar. Mostly individual drum hits, heavily filtered using those fascinating E-MU envelopes.

A brief list of samples (hope WeeklyBeats staff doesn't find any infringement of the site rules... I think I work my a** off so no obvious "steal" is made here. Anyway, I would love to hear your opinion on the subject)

drums (no loops, just 1/8th breaks and individual hits):

Player - "Baby come back" (1977) (bass sounds and snares)
The Gap Band - "Outstanding" (1982) (individual conga hits)
Kraftwerk - "Home Computer" (1981) (hihats and one "blip" used both as kick and snare enhancer)
Blondie - "Call me" (1980) (I needed some Roland CR8000 analog drum hits found in the first half bar)

pads were taken from the first chord of an old Data Becker "Techno Maker" demo from 1998

Dirk Geiger's "Zusammen" (2011) (i dropped the needle at random and searched for a hihat, then warped)

The intro speech belongs to Mark Ronson's TED Talk on the culture of sampling, heavily timestretched

Lead "synth" and sub-bass was built with Audacity: pure sinewave single cycle and really short square wave with reverb (less than 16 Kb in size). Sweeps and FX are created using another Audacity "white noise" single cycle loops, plus one sound effect taken from a "scratch battle" vinyl abruptly stopped.

THE WHOLE PROJECT FITS INTO TWO FLOPPY DISKS. Ableton Live's MIDI project is only 49 kb smile

I know there are plenty of mistakes, but I guess you could see I'm proud of finishing this one. It was a personal challenge and you could believe I am really NOT a hardware fanboy. Musically there are several other ways to achieve a similar result, but this week I tried this one.

Thank you all for listening and best wishes for week 8 smile

P.S. I leave you with some photos




This submission is licensed by author under CC Attribution Share Alike (BY-SA)

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February 22, 2016 12:54 am

Great that you squeezed this out of the EMU in short time frame .. very cool!

February 22, 2016 1:04 am

limitations are our friends. i think this will stay with you for a long time, and will serve you well with other endeavours, too. kudos!

February 22, 2016 1:30 am

Funnest piece so far this week. You're right, things do sound cooler when they're slower.

February 22, 2016 1:31 am

great track. super sounding and groovy it is. EMU rules. thanks for the pics and documentation (data becker, haha). making sounds with audacity...hm, i have to check this out.

February 22, 2016 4:31 am

it is really cool reading about the process involved in this track. I just got my first midi device and a lot of things confuse and anger me because I am not a clever man. I really hope to explore all the different ways to make sounds more fully. It is neat seeing your project file too. Sounds good to me, keep it up!

February 22, 2016 8:32 am

This is the coolest!!
Must have taken you so much time!!!
The track sounds amazing and it's very interesting to read where you got your samples and sounds. I'm checking out the various tracks as we speak and I'm even more impressed now; smile

February 22, 2016 4:50 pm

This is pretty great!

February 22, 2016 5:26 pm

Such an awesome old school sound!

February 22, 2016 8:52 pm

The E D A sequence is super chill. Love it dude. Can tell this track is full of love

February 22, 2016 8:57 pm
Brackleforth wrote:

The E D A sequence is super chill. Love it dude. Can tell this track is full of love

Should be wonderful to have such a well trained ear! I'm sure the chord is not properly mapped in my preset setup smile

Thanks for the kind words. Yes, I can tell you I sweated for this one smile

February 22, 2016 10:09 pm
tim koch wrote:

Great that you squeezed this out of the EMU in short time frame .. very cool!

Actually I spent the first 3 days wasting time in such mundane things as proper cables and a suitable ergonomic placement. Besides, I modified the internal power supply case so I could turn off the internal fan and operate in near silence. No complains so far and the unit runs just warm

colorful grey wrote:

limitations are our friends. i think this will stay with you for a long time, and will serve you well with other endeavours, too. kudos!

Yes, indeed! I'm very proud of "the trip I took" with this unit and hardware sampling in general, but I'm not a gear fanboy at all! I'll probably end taking all this experience back to the 2016-sofware-realm once I feel there's nothing more I could squeeze out of these machines. I still don't find any "character" and "warmer sound" apart from the decisions that the limited options lead you to.

February 22, 2016 10:39 pm
Jim Wood wrote:

Funnest piece so far this week. You're right, things do sound cooler when they're slower.

Thank you Jim! That sentenced really hit the spot with me... We downtempo producers should wear t-shirts and underwear with those word on golden capitals smile

minaret_kid wrote:

great track. super sounding and groovy it is. EMU rules. thanks for the pics and documentation (data becker, haha). making sounds with audacity...hm, i have to check this out.

Haha I knew someone would remember Data Becker's Techno Maker... I'm recently browsing through early Future Music volumes from back in the late 90s... even found an early release of the Kyma generative studio... for Windows 95!

Lots of surprises here. I bet you played with some of those before you got your analogic arsenal

February 22, 2016 11:00 pm
minaret_kid wrote:

great track. super sounding and groovy it is. EMU rules. thanks for the pics and documentation (data becker, haha). making sounds with audacity...hm, i have to check this out.

BTW Audacity is fantastic for generating test tones and basic wavetables, specially if you have some empty sampler waiting for fresh sounds

February 22, 2016 11:11 pm
dj someguy wrote:

This is the coolest!!
Must have taken you so much time!!!
The track sounds amazing and it's very interesting to read where you got your samples and sounds. I'm checking out the various tracks as we speak and I'm even more impressed now; smile

Thanks man. It was a lot of time, indeed. 4 evenings ending really late at night, although I was learning my way through the machine.

I wanted to clearly quote my samples because, though I'm a big fan of every song a take sounds from, I try to make my best effort on making those samples truly "my own". Really appreciated you took the time to listen to the originals.

Abludo wrote:

Such an awesome old school sound!

Well, I guess I'm getting old myself wink

I think there's a lot of influence of the imposed workflow that the machine makes you choose. Believe me, when you hear some producer talking about "that jungle sound from the Akai/E-MU/whatever", it could be achieved in software... but it's really nice what you learn using them instead of chopping breaks with Recycle.

Thanks Abludo

thricefoldedcloak wrote:

it is really cool reading about the process involved in this track. I just got my first midi device and a lot of things confuse and anger me because I am not a clever man. I really hope to explore all the different ways to make sounds more fully. It is neat seeing your project file too. Sounds good to me, keep it up!

Don't give up on MIDI! when I got my first outboard equipment I was like "what's the point?... all this could be made in the box without so much hassle", but once you get it, it becomes part of your skillset and new possiblilities appear in places where you would have "needed a ew plugin" before

Ipaghost wrote:

This is pretty great!

Will try to answer that on your own terms, trying to catch up with the GIF game wink

Thank you, man!

February 22, 2016 11:20 pm
laguna wrote:

Will try to answer that on your own terms, trying to catch up with the GIF game wink

Thank you, man!

February 23, 2016 9:22 am

Hey thanks for the feedback!

This stuff is really great, and wow what a great description and pics! Warm and lush sound!

February 23, 2016 2:51 pm
Dkstr wrote:

Hey thanks for the feedback!

This stuff is really great, and wow what a great description and pics! Warm and lush sound!

Thank you for listening! I'm glad you liked those pics. I wanted to share some details about how this was made

February 24, 2016 11:25 am

For someone who does everything in one program reading about your process is awe inspiring. Amazing process and amazing tune.

February 25, 2016 1:29 am

Ok, aside from the song just being actually super chill and awesome, this writeup and your whole process is absolutely inspiring. I came to your profile thinking "I'll just go check out what he made this week" and instead I'm pouring over your details and pictures all jelly.

February 25, 2016 1:42 pm

Things really do sound cooler when they're slower.

February 25, 2016 6:09 pm

I dig the "J Dilla covering trip-hop" vibe on this. I didn't hear any mistakes-- it all sounded intentional to me

February 27, 2016 12:27 pm

Great track, and impressive given the short time you've had the sampler.
Thanks for giving us insight into the process.

February 27, 2016 9:20 pm

Awesome track, Laguna! Great use of those samples. I don't think there's anything wrong with recycling stuff. You made something entirely new (and fresh)!

March 1, 2016 12:33 am

Just relax and listen lagunamusic!

Great tune!

March 2, 2016 5:08 am

That's a sweet setup you have there! Thanks for sharing all of that.  The labor of love tracks are the most satisfying smile  Nice work!

March 6, 2016 6:39 pm

Wunderbar !

March 7, 2016 4:38 am

Dude all these beats are so good, i cant praise them enough! When are you gonna do a vinyl release?!

March 23, 2016 11:48 pm
Nimble Cipher wrote:

For someone who does everything in one program reading about your process is awe inspiring. Amazing process and amazing tune.

scottux wrote:

Ok, aside from the song just being actually super chill and awesome, this writeup and your whole process is absolutely inspiring. I came to your profile thinking "I'll just go check out what he made this week" and instead I'm pouring over your details and pictures all jelly.

Thank you guys, indeed! I sometimes feel a little bit too nerdy talking production. Even some of my actual musician friends (now that I know many, to be honest) are more acoustic/live oriented, so I can't completely share my experience. I also love when you give details about your setups and workflows. Most of us have sometimes completely different ways of approaching the same subject.

That's one of the many beauties of WB.

March 23, 2016 11:49 pm
Edmund Snyder wrote:

Things really do sound cooler when they're slower.

Indeed, my friend. Pitch down control on the turntable is the producer's best friend smile

March 23, 2016 11:53 pm
CrazyBob wrote:

I dig the "J Dilla covering trip-hop" vibe on this. I didn't hear any mistakes-- it all sounded intentional to me

Thank you Crazy Bob! Actually I was surprised with your comment because I'm really not very familiar with J-Dilla's work, though I know some of his "wonky anthems". I think my references are a little bit older, though anyway the analogy is really flattering smile

m2K7 wrote:

Wunderbar !

Danke schön, m2K7. Du bist sehr freundlich smile

March 23, 2016 11:57 pm
Plantrain wrote:

Great track, and impressive given the short time you've had the sampler.
Thanks for giving us insight into the process.

Thank you for listening, Plaintrain! I wish I had more time so I could share even more. It's a serious work to document everything. When I see some of you make videos and nice artwork... My deepest respect to that smile


cfurrow wrote:

Awesome track, Laguna! Great use of those samples. I don't think there's anything wrong with recycling stuff. You made something entirely new (and fresh)!

Thank you cfurrow. I really worked hard on this one so it's really nice to hear you feel I'm not "stealing" some chops and calling it a day smile


Naikymusic wrote:

Just relax and listen lagunamusic!

Great tune!

Muchas gracias Señor! Espero que le haya gustado ésta. Le tengo guardadas unas cuantas más

March 24, 2016 12:00 am
Tone Matrix wrote:

That's a sweet setup you have there! Thanks for sharing all of that.  The labor of love tracks are the most satisfying smile  Nice work!

Oh, it's quite a simple one, but it was only recently that I found a proper place for everything, because using the sampler requires a lot of "ergonomy"

Thanks for listening, man!

donnyjankowski wrote:

Dude all these beats are so good, i cant praise them enough! When are you gonna do a vinyl release?!

That would be a dream come true, man! Just the suggestion is really flattering. Sorry to reply so late to your kind comments. I'm still catching up with some stuff both musical and life-related

Peace!

April 2, 2016 10:44 am

Nice one!  That digital slow down :-0   Love the sound of that unit hey.  Could do with a master compressor on the output... something like an Orban or API.... but solid work :-)

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