This week’s free Ableton Live Pack comes from samples of an old Casio MT-68 keyboard sent to me by my lifelong friend Mike Longo. Do yourself a favor and check Mike out on Facebook and keep an eye on what he is doing. Below, he’s given us a sample of what he’s been working on lately, and I think it’s some really cool stuff. Mike has always been a musical inspiration to me (after all, he’s the guy that taught me my first song on guitar, “Enter Sandman” by Metallica. #badass ) and I’m betting you will also love what he does.
Mike and I collaborated on the Snake Drum Synth a couple weeks ago, check it out if you missed it, it’s a really cool one. Anyway, we’ve been friends since elementary school and even back then I can remember this little Casio keyboard being around his house. The instrument has survived numerous moves, changes in ownership, and lots of abuse from young kids that have no idea what they are doing with it (those kids being Mike and me). It’s traveled the United States many times over and somehow manages to still churn out it’s classic old school retro sounds. Mike has sampled four of the built in presets and organized it nicely in to Ableton’s Sampler. From there, I started to give it the AfroDJMac touch, adding effects to help you take this virtual reincarnation to levels impossible on the original.
One of my favorite things about this instrument and is how the sound changes over time. We set the samples to play normally, then to loop backwards and forwards, and every time it loops some cool things happen to the sound, i.e. glitches, pops, twists, etc. It gives the synth an organic movement that you don’t get with the original. We put controls for Sampler’s FM Osc, and moving those knobs while playing will add all kinds of layers of goodness to your sound. Crank the FM Osc Type and FM Osc Volume knobs to the max and you in effect have a white noise generator. Through an Auto-Filter in the chain and you can create some nice white noise sweeps. We put a Ping Pong Delay in the chain and that is set to “Repitch Mode.” This allows for some analog delay emulation. Check out Thavius Beck’s recent tutorial on Dubspot for some cool uses of this “hidden” feature. A bit crusher and some chorus/spread round this instrument out into something I think you will find especially nostalgic and useful.
Before you go, Do you like glitchy drums, Moog sounds, and really cool step sequencers? Check out the AfroVolt Pack 1, which is a collection of glitchy drum sounds created with the Moog Slim Phatty, as well as, a step sequencer for the Novation LaunchPad. It is available at Voltage Disciple. Take care!