As I say often Reason is my Ableton’s good looking girlfriend. My start-up template always has Reason ready to go to pretty things up. The Swede’s are moving faster with updates than they used to and here we have Reason 5 and Record 1.5. There’s some good new features: sampling (direct into Re-Drum!), Neptune vocal tuning, sequencer “blocks”, Dr. Octo Rex, the new Kong groovebox and more.
“Sampling in Reason is simple and straightforward. Hit the sample button and Reason starts sampling. Reason will detect the sample start automatically. You can sample when Reason is running too if you like – no need to stop the music.” – propellerheads.se
Here’s an evolution in music software I like: Dr. Octo Rex. The .rex format is an old format which allows you to auto splice a sample and therefore make it easy to rearrange the pieces. It also allowed some slowing down speeding up of the clip long before Ableton was born. Sampled sounds have a certain punch to them. I think they are number two in the pecking order for chest thumb behind pure analog and leaps and bounds over virtual instruments. I can sit and play for hours with the Rex loop player in Reason. I wasn’t ever expecting it to be updated but here it is.
“The upgraded Dr. Octo Rex loop player loads eight REX loops into one player and lets you switch between them on the fly. This makes arranging a breeze – load the drum loops into one player, the guitars into another and use the sequencer to select what loop to play in a pattern-like fashion. With eight loops to switch between, the new rex also comes ready for the experimental minded. Set the player to retrig the loops on the beat, on the bar or on the 16th note. Or program the loops manually like in the original rex player.” – propellerheads.se
Surprise! The software that made Propellerhead famous has returned: ReBirth for the iPhone. Who wasn’t amazed to have Roland TB-303s, 808s and 909s on their 1990’s computers? Now we can have it on our phones. It’s $6.99 and you can download it now: click here
“ReBirth is back…In your iPhone! Propellerhead Software’s legendary Techno Micro Composer has been reincarnated. This time around, ReBirth takes the form of a seriously block rocking iPhone music app. Released in 1997 and discontinued in 2005, Propellerhead ReBirth was the first music software to reproduce the sound and behavior of those three classic Roland devices that defined the sound of early Techno and Acid House: the TB-303 Bassline Synth and the TR-808 and TR-909 Rhythm Composers.” – rebirthapp.com
My friend James Bernard from Propellerheads asked me to post some info regarding some small get togethers that will be happening in NYC over the next few months. Here’s the info:
EMF (Electronic Music Foundation) Studios (link), 307 7th Ave. Ste 1402 NY NY 10001 ( between 27th and 28th, a couple buildings down from 28th. There’s a 1 – 9 subway stop right at 28th and 7th. It’s just a few blocks down from Penn Station.)
Dates: April 26th (With James Bernard), May 31st (With Gerry Basserman), June 28th, July 26th, and August 30th
Time: 6PM – 10PM (light refreshments will be on hand).
The venue will only hold approx. 20-30 people at a time so please RSVP with a timeslot that you would like to attend (6-7PM, 7-8PM, 8-9PM, 9-10PM).
Nothing beats the sound of the 80s. Period. At least that’s my own view. The amazing and expensive Fairlight CMI was the sampler that defined much of the 80s sound. Bands like Art of Noise used the Fairlight extensively. I once owned a Roland S-50 sampler and it had a small copy of the Fairlight’s amazing sound set. I miss those sounds so I’m happy to report that PowerFX has released a Refill for Propellerheads Reason called Fairlight CMI Legacy.
“This library collects an awesome amount of ultra clean recordings of the original sounds from the Fairlight CMI II, the world’s first real sampling based workstation as premiered some time before 1980. And this entire Reason 4 library costs much less than 64 kilobytes of memory did in 1980. The ReFill contains somewhat more than that, too. It carries 644 Megabyte of samples. You get over 2000 sounds in all, including all of the Fairlight’s 33 precious 8 inch factory discs. To celebrate the Fairlight feel, all new samples are labeled and arranged in virtual 8 inch disks as well.” – powerfx.com
“Propellerhead Software’s product specialist James Bernard kicks off this series of tutorials with a demonstration on creative uses of the Record mixer’s dynamics section to create rhythmic gating effects, also known as ‘trance gate’.” – PropellerheadSW
“Week 4 is here and this time James shows you the basics of the Contol Volt and Gate features in Reason and Record. Many users shy away from CV/Gate for fear of not knowing what they do, but CV/Gate is an immensely powerful feature and quite straightforward to use once you grasp the basic concept.” – – PropellerheadSW
Call me strange but sometimes I enjoy relaxed first looks at software. You know, the ones where the person doesn’t really know whats going on yet. Christopher O’Riley A.K.A Wassaname takes his first stab at Propellerhead Record. He doesn’t produce the kind of music I’m really into but for some reason I found this video interesting. I never heard anyone call something “giant sweet” before.
If you want the opposite effect check out the official commercial:
Even though I spend 99% of my time in Ableton live it’s good to jump completely out of that environment for a song or two. If you make music for a living and need an alternate universe to record in nothing beats the Propellerhead world.
Propellerhead is one of my favorite music software companies. I use pretty much everything they have released so far with joy. Their ware sounds great, doesn’t crash, has a nice Swedish aesthetic and is priced right. It’s been glaringly obvious the one piece of kit they lacked in their arsenal was a way to record actual audio. Better late than never is the motto of the day because our favorite virtual rack guys have stepped up to the plate. If this is going to replace your DAW or not will depend on your personal taste and workflow. My guess is it will be a nice tool to jump in and out of just like Reason is.
“Welcome to Record, Propellerhead Software’s brand new recording software. Record gives you unlimited audio tracks, world class effects and mixing gear, and a whole new take on music recording. With an intuitive, straightforward interface and a hands-on approach to capturing performances, Record was designed for musicians – not audio engineers. This is recording done right.” – Propellerheads.se
Dave Spoon says, “The best records sometimes are just very simple and easier said than done.”. I can’t agree with that more. Usually if you’re tweaking for hours with a mountain of sound layers your probably working on a turd. Here’s a quick look at his Reason file for his big UK hit “At Night” (iTunes).