I created this simple microtrack while demonstrating how to use the M-Audio Oxygen 25 controller with Reason 5 for my audio production class. There’s a heavy dose of Curtis Mayfield in this and no artistic merit on my part, but it was fun to see the reaction from my students as I created the track in a matter of minutes. If only I got a commission from Propellerheads for all the new Reason users I churn out of my classes (wink). During the demo I illustrated how to use the O25 to play instruments sounds, remap controls, and apply automation.
Here’s a render of a Subtractor bass line I created using Matrix during a Reason demonstration for my sound design class last week. The theme of the demonstration was subtractive synthesis, so I started by initializing the Subtractor and creating a new sound from there. I threw a Dr. Rex drum pattern with a linear sweep on the envelope amount to illustrate automation as well.
Tomorrow morning I am going to be discussing some basic concepts of sound synthesis including subtractive synthesis with my sound design class. We’ll be looking at some hardware synthesizers, listening to some sounds, then creating sounds of our own. Tonight I created this pulse in Reason using the Subtractor instrument followed by delay and reverb as an example to show, although rather than showing this example I will create something else using a similar technique during the demo.
I was quite pleased with this project for my audio production class that was produced recently by Jawara Hughes. Around mid-term I introduced Propellerheads Reason to the class. This was only the second time that Jawara used Reason to create an original track. He added the vocals and finalized the piece in Pro Tools. Congratulations, on an excellent piece of electro-funk-meets-kinetic-type.
I’ve started working again on my Gestural Music Sequencer after putting it down at end of the quarter for grading and paperwork. The main task that I’m working on is managing the timing so that it’s no longer tied to the frame rate. To do this I’m using Java’s Thread class in Processing.org to drive the tempo independently from the frame rate. Thanks to toxi over at PostSpectacular.com and his response to a question on precise timing, I learned what was necessary to set note durations based on tempo created from Java’s System.nanoTime() method. So far I have enabled eleven durations, from a whole note down to a sixty-fourth note.
While implementing this feature I inadvertently created a bug that set the time interval to zero. I quickly fixed the bug, but not before hearing some pretty amazing sounding glitches out of Reason as it received a stream – make that a tsunami – of note on data as fast as the processor could send it. Here’s how it sounds when Reason is flooded with note on information. The high pitch ringing is caused by the frequency of notes being sent, which turns out to be about 739 Hertz, in other words, seven hundred thirty-nine notes a second. Not even Ingvay Malmsteen can play that fast.