After lusting after a Rytm for ages I pulled the trigger and got one and…
nothing, I just didn’t feel it, I was incredibly underwhelmed, unless I use samples I find it real hard to make that sound I’m after and used as a sampler it feels like a waste as the Digitakt can do more or less the same with more sample editing parameters.
It’s odd as I know how much it can do and it should be perfect for the sound I’m after, think latest Scorn stuff, but I just look at it, fiddle around and turn it off…
Anyone has any suggestion on how to get to love it?
General suggestion would to look at some demos or soundpacks and see if there are any you really like. They’d be good to ‘reverse engineer’. That’s what I ended up doing with the few elektrons I didn’t immediately gel with.
I’ve come to realize that true love isn’t love at first site, it’s the one you invest in. The type of love where you go to counseling and try and resolve your grievances.
That flamming passion, love at first site thing usually fizzles out into a unyielding meh…
Yes this applies to gear as well….
TL;DR give it some time work on it.
I’m doing the same with octatrack (not that I’m replacing it) where I’m trying to program tracker style Aphex drums and I’m trying to really get it work so that I don’t go and buy a tracker. I’m not even close to being there. But damn it if I won’t try atleast!
I find it really odd, I even gelled with the OT, so it’s not a matter of not being willing to put the time in, and I know from YouTube and the demos that it can sound the way I want it to (dirty gritty kicks, growls, huge reverbs) but so far I get there only with samples so I keep wondering if it’s worth using such a beast just for the sampling…
Liberal use of track overdrive and master distortion will get you that grittiness. It’s quite a beast for this and I end up having to roll back on it eventually for my style - I.e. it’s got plenty of grit on tap.
First, take the time to master each synthesis engine. Find your best snare, your best kick, best hat, make them blend elegantly.
On the other hand, try to create very experimental percussions, just go for the weirdest and save your Sounds when they are ok. This path is important to discover what the machine can do, that you hadn’t thought of before. Think FM with LFO, percussion out of filter alone, use of noise, resample…
Another axis is to make samples better by using synthesis: try to melt both to get the best out of it.
At last, biggest problem can come from having too many sounds at once: when a beat is too crowded, you usually can’t identify easily what doesn’t work. Check this thread to get some ideas about this:
Pretty sure we were discussing this on IDMF. I had a similar issue with both the Digitone and Machinedrum, and I basically just tried working with presets for a while until I could make the sounds I wanted myself.
I’d take some time to download a few different soundbanks and presets and play around with the ones you like, make patterns out of that for a while until you can reverse engineer the sounds that work for you.
Personally I think that’s the only way around it. Otherwise you’re just going to get in your own head about what you’re not liking or not doing, so skip that part, get to a point where you do like what you’re doing (even if it’s someone else’s sounds), and take it from there.
The rytm to me excels and being able to add variety and interest in drum patterns, which is the elektron sequencer u can find in all the machines. Scenes and perf controls are what really add to the rytm to me. They are simple to set up and a lot of fun to jam and noodle with.
Just flit through the factory kits till you find one you like the sound of. In some ways you have to let go of the sounds you think you want and work with the sounds you get, its not an 808 or 909. Of course if they are not clicking then maybe its not for you, but it offers a lot of control and performative aspects, which you can get pretty deep into or stay pretty light with.
The master compressor on this machine is really part of the sound and brings it (almost) up to machinedrum smack. That took me a while to work out. Seems the basic gain staging is set to include overdrive and compressor.
In saying that, I use mainly for sounds the MD doesn’t excel at rather than a centre piece.