The gap between production and the actual creative process of creating music has been getting smaller and smaller over the last couple of years. Where at first recording and mixing music was a very extensive operation, nowadays computers have gotten so fast that the amount of latency caused by the digital processing of the recorded or virtually orchestrated tracks is virtually null. For audio that is, video is still quite a different story of course.
Ableton Live enables you to take this aspect to the foremost frontier. Where at first it would take a couple of days to make a remix, or better yet, an alternative take of a song (as would be the case with recording a band), it is now possible to have the mix and effects settings ready for playback as well as recording on the fly while playing back the arrangement.
Ultimately this means that creating a digital / virtually orchestrated composition is no longer a matter of arranging and tuning, it becomes more like a giant controllable instrument. And since the processor power of computers today is usually not at an end here, most of the time you can record the process as audio as well as automation, in case you need to make small adjustments to the recorded parameters afterwards.
As well as the complete video recording of live in space and the tutorial, a trimmed video of every track is available. Alternatively you can also download either the complete mp3 file of the set or a .rar file containing each track as separate mp3 file here:
First up, here's the complete final recording on our youtube channel:
Then, an in-depth tutorial on the live set:
The idea for "Live In Space" came to me while working with Tonfilm on the node08 live set in 2008. I previously had a wide gap between the live and "radio" version of a track. The live versions were build up out of loops cut from the original track, and it was a lot of work making sure that the live arrangement of the song was performed correctly.
On the node08 set up me and Tonfilm started to split up the songs into multiple audio tracks, but at the same time made sure the original build up of the arrangement stayed in tact. This way we could focus a lot more on the use of effects and tricks while the arrangement more or less played it self.
I started using Ableton Live in 2005 for a live recording workshop on the Dutch Lowlands festival, and have been using it ever since for both live as well as composition software. It enables you to trigger a large range of samples on the fly, while at the same time having full control of routing and fx.
My FX chain is mainlly build up out of standard Ableton effects since they usually have a very low latency, and is finished off by Native Instruments Fast FX, part of the electronic instruments collection, and an external Korg Kaoss Pad 3.
For control of the MIDI parameters in ableton, I use the Behringer BCF 2000 fader module, the Novation Launchpad and a Behringer FCB 1010 footpedal.
I've always loved to collaborate with other musiscians, somehow it always seems to bring out the best in me when I work with other people. Besides my own tracks, "Live In Space" features collaborations with Humanworkshop's Bass specialist Durk Kooistra, v4 live motion graphics expert Tonfilm and German techno producer Andy Rüter.
A studio version of track eight, Gentle Giants, will soon be available on the upcoming Hopskotch "Divergence" LP. Both Gentle Giants and fret_1 are also available as full time music Videos done by our cinema 4d master Equiloud on youtube and Vimeo.
Download the File
I created a live arrangement, including the actual audiofiles of the track Bass = Axe for download along with this turorial. I created the file using Ableton Live 8.2, so you will need a version 8.2 or higher in order to open it.
I ported the midi controls of the sends to keys 1 to 5 on the keyboard, as well as the letters q w e r and t for the mutes of the audio channels. Also I created macro controls for most of the effecs I use, so you can easily convert them to your own midi controller. If you are the owner of reaktor 5, you will also be able to use the Fast FX.
You will need to set the outputs of the audio channels "B OUT" and "A OUT" to the respective audio channels of your soundcard. Also, if you want to record the set, you will need to set the input of audio channel "rec_kp" to the inputs in which you've plugged your outboard effect's outputs, in my case External in 3-4.
Building the Ton-Kraft Studio After all the time we spent making music and doing sound design, we got to learn a little this and that about creating an optimal audio space. In this tutorial series we’ll share the knowledge.
FM8 Wobble Bass Tutorial Since it’s been a while since we published a free tutorial, we figured now would be a good time to bring you some FM8 action.