The Secret of Interesting Rhythms

I’m teaching the Groove lesson at Pointblank this week and it’s been interesting giving some of the secrets away. It’s easy to inject ‘feel’ into your programming, certainly if you steal the feel of another rhythm. The technique is an often overlooked aspect of both Cubase and Logic and uses their ability to create custom Quantize grids based on the timing of a real loop. Using Recycle to slice a loop and create a Midi file from it is the starting point, for the rest of it you’ll just have to come to the class! Seriously though I have to respect Pointblank as a college so you won’t be finding the things I teach on the course laid out for all to access on this blog.

You know what, despite competition from tools such as Apple Loops, Acid, SX’s Hitpoints and Ableton Live’s Warp Markers Recycle is still the king of the tools for manipulating and editing rhythms, particularly those from around the world. If you listen to any of the early Spiritual South productions that I did you’ll hear some really cool percussive rhythms. Happy for example was a whole bunch of rex files mixed together to create that insane speeding up samba frenzy. Each rex file was edited and manipulated to avoid any sampling issues – listen closely and you’ll hear gated elements in the rhythm too – thanks to Recycle’s Gate Slices function. Most of the output I was involved with (that’s up to the Sabrina Malheiros remix) had some elements of Recycle in there somewhere so big up the Propellerheads team for such a useful tool.

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