The feature that has me the most excited about Live 9 is Drum and Melody to MIDI. I’ve use various other tools to do this (Melodyne for one) but it’s always been hit or miss. It does look like Ableton has cracked this and it’s going to be an amazing and useful tool.
“Your voice is the new keyboard: sing, beatbox, tap a rhythm on your desk, or play any solo instrument to capture your musical ideas as they come. Then use the Melody- or Drums-to-MIDI feature to turn your recordings into MIDI clips that you can edit and reuse with any sound.” – ableton.com
Ableton today announced Live 9 and there new integrated hardware controller Push. There are many new features. The only piece of software I look at more is an internet browser. I’ve loved Live since version 4 and these new features have me pleased. 9 has Record Automation into Clips, a new Browser, Glue Compressor, Convolution Reverb, Melody and Drums to Midi Feature (oh yes!!), Automation Curves and more. Push also looks great. Designed with Akai. I hope they release it soon. The new Ableton website and logo is very nice too.
Hanging in my studio today with my Eurorack and Ableton. Tiptop Audio 808 modules, Moog Slim Phatty, Wiard Oscillator into Toppobrillo Multifilter, Ensoniq ESQ-1 choir sound (off camera). Ableton Live Session View switching from Verse to Chorus. Make Noise Echophon at the end.
“Synthpop (also known as electropop, or technopop) is a genre of popular music that first became prominent in the 1980s, in which the synthesizer is the dominant musical instrument.” – Wikipedia
Today I thought I would give you a quick look at some of my workflow. Here’s how I often start creating an EBM (Electronic Body Music) style track. I’ve started a Eurorack modular system and you can see my first two pieces in action here. I have recorded a 5V Pulse into Ableton from the Korg SyncKontrol iOS app. I loaded the click into Simpler and use MIDI to create a pattern. In this example it’s a straight 16th note. I use Ableton Live to route the 5V click out of my Motu 828 MKIII into a Doepfer Dark Time analog sequencer. The Dark Time is not in sync with my Ableton MIDI set up. The Dark Time controls an Analog Solutions Telemark (SEM clone). 8 steps of CV variation and CV filter variation loop the bassline. I also have the Dark Time send a clock out to a Korg Monotribe. On the Monotribe I have muted the drums and just have it playing some lazer zap type sounds typically where you would find a snare drum. Using MIDI I have a Vermona DRM1 MKIII playing a kick and snare. The Monotribe’s clock out goes into an Intellijel uStep which sends a 16th note clock to a Make Noise Echophone. I have a MFB-522 drum machine in sync with Ableton via MIDI playing a clap. This clap is sent into the Echophon where it’s delay shimmers in 16 synced steps because of the uStep control. I can play with the Echophon’s pitch knob for a wicked nice analog clap delay effect. Is it worth all this effort? In my opinion yes. You can’t really get a sound like this without going analog. This part would make a good verse. Because I can pitch the bassline on a MIDI keyboard the next step is to make a Chorus, maybe change the Dark Time sequence length or patter slightly, add some pads from an Ensoniq ESQ-1 and add vocals. I hope you enjoyed the peek into a world where control is everything.
“CV/Gate (an abbreviation of Control Voltage/Gate) is an analog method of controlling synthesizers, drum machines and other similar equipment with external sequencers. The Control Voltage typically controls pitch and the Gate signal controls note on/off. This method was widely used in the epoch of analog modular synthesizers, beginning in the 1960s and up to the early 1980s. It was mostly superseded by the MIDI protocol, which is more feature-rich, easier to configure reliably, and more easily supports polyphony.” – wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_voltage
I’ve become internet friends with Brian “AfroDJmac”. In passing I mentioned a possible idea for one of his incredible free Ableton Live packs. Basically I love cassette tape hiss. I suggested that if he access to some old tapes I would certainly like a “pack of hiss”. Well a week later and viola Brian surprised me with this nice gift: Free Ableton Pack #60: Tape Hiss Vinyl Crackle! Watch the video above because this isn’t just some samples. Brian has spent time making things work properly and also added vinyl crackle. Eat that Slate Digital!
“An Ableton Live Instrument Rack that turns any synth you have into a synth that sounds like it came from tape or record!” – afrodjmac.com
Key Mapping in Ableton Live is very easy. However did you know you could use it to compare plug-in settings? Watch the video above and Berklee’s Loudon Stearns shows you how to do it at 3:30 in.
“This video includes step-by-step instruction on the keymapping process, setting up a default template with important key mappings, using keymappings to compare plug-in settings, working with keyboard MIDI input, the basics of MIDI mapping, and using MIDI mapping to record and perform single handedly.” – berkleemusic
I’ve used this technique with drum racks for a while. It’s a great way to to get changing grooves that surprise people and are very dancey. You can download the rack in the video above: here.
In this tutorial Danny J Lewis shows you how to create a rack that emulates the mechanics behind the way the drum patterns switch in the recently released ‘Figure’ app.” – youtube.com/user/pointblankonline
I sat on the fence for a long while before purchasing Max for Live. I now find it an indispensable tool in my arsenal. I’ve yet to try this new Supacut freebie but it looks tasty.
“Inspired by the classic beat effect plugins LiveCut and SupaTrigga, Ned Rush designed Suparcut for Max for Live. Suparcut’s parameters, including beat loops of various lengths and classic stretching and pitching effects, can either be sequenced or controlled by probability sliders.” – ableton.com