In this video tutorial, Dubspot course designer and Maschine specialist Matt Cellitti explores new sound design workflow with Maschine 2.0's drum synths, which can offer efficient and inspiring results for drum hits.
Maschine 2.0's workflow enhancements and engine optimizations are getting a lot of attention, and deservingly so. In light of this, the new drum synths may seem like just a bonus add-on, but they are actually one of the most useful and creative additions to Maschine in years.
Most producers have gone down the rabbit hole searching for the perfect kick drum sample for hours on end. The reality is that most of us have too many drum samples at our disposal these days. We start writing drum patterns and are often afraid to commit to a specific sound, knowing that the perfect sample is somewhere in our vast collection, if we can only find it. I've found that the new drum synths are often the best place to start looking for drum sounds, because they are so easy to shape. This is especially helpful when you're layering drums and need a very specific tone to compliment a drum sample. Maybe you have a kick sample that is low and full, but missing a sharp attack. Rather than search endlessly for a good top-end sample to compliment it, I will almost always use the drum synth to sculpt the exact tone I want.
The drum synths are efficient and inspiring because they are simple, monophonic synthesizers, optimized for a specific function. Sure, you could make synthetic drum sounds out from any synthesizer on the market, but having only a small set of focused parameters helps you make quick, intelligent decisions without over-thinking things. In most cases, the only adjustments you can make are to important parameters like attack, body, tuning, and decay. The different synth engines often don't tell you what kind of waveform the oscillator is generating, which is great because you simply rely on your ears to choose properly.
The drum synths can't really be pigeonholed into specific genre uses either. They can create a wide variety of sounds, from classic old school drum machine sounds, to ultra-realistic acoustic kits, to trippy glitch. Add on the extensive effects from Maschine to process the drum synths, and things get really interesting in a hurry. Don't forget to utilize the drum synths for melodic parts too–you can get some great results and happy accidents! – Matt Cellitti
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