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MOK19
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classic jungle-style loop pitching and slicing

Postby MOK19 » Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:58 am

Howdy.

I'm sorta new to this, and I've been trying to use some classic breaks lately, but I keep running into the same problem. What I'd like is for the loops to get pitched up and down, and time-altered, based on the host bpm. Thus a higher bpm than the source sample would be shorter and higher pitch. I don't think I've quite found the best way of going about this.

Or maybe I'm coming at it from the wrong angle...? I just don't like the way the drums sound when they're time-stretched without pitch changes.

Also as an aside, is there any good literature out there on the general topic of break loops? Old or new, Geist-related or non. I've seen the Geist tutorial vids. I'm curious how they did it back in the day. The results sound so consistent across so many songs that it seems like there was a lot of commonality in their methods.

Thanks, folks.

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alien_brain
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Postby alien_brain » Wed Feb 01, 2012 3:28 pm

i think youll find that if you could stick to a BPM and make a kit specifically for that BPM with layers and such, youll be more able to achieve your goal within geist.

alternatively, you can try a free plugin called UVI workstation that does a lot of that automatically. its quite a value at the price. (heres an example of a loop i was toying with inside UVI workstation)

i think youll find that geist doesnt do everything, but what it does it does very well. theres no harm in employing additional plugins that do something you need, i always say. :D
Last edited by alien_brain on Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:05 am, edited 2 times in total.

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alien_brain
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Postby alien_brain » Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:20 pm

re methods, the beauty of jungle rhythms as made early in the history of jungle is that it was all about how you cut your amen and what you did with the slices. there was nothing else really, everyone had the same basic things to work with. just a sample cut up and rearranged with various pitching, time stretching, volume level and panning. that being said, there were a number of ways to get there, and all had their strengths and weaknesses.

much of what you hear from the early years came from 'trackers.' basically a tracker is an old style sample sequencer (circa mid 80s to present) that handles midi too, on a rudimentary level. the interface is based around text commands that fly by like a piano roll. each command resides on its own line (or tick, usually at a resolution of 32nd notes). basically a big step sequencer with capabilities as a sampler that may seem basic, but all available tricks used in combination are all anyone uses for sampled phrases.

AST is an EMU endorsed 'DOS tracker' which utilizes the EMU8000 chip found on Creative SoundBlaster AWE32 and 64 soundcards in a direct manner, rather than through the shitty Creative Windoz driver... therefore allowing direct control of the sample data and hardware via pattern writing. every step can contain a note value, a velocity value, a note cut off, and any one of about 60-80 commands related to any aspect of the system including parameter automation, FX application, tempo, instrument selection, etc. you can resample the instruments output (internally, perfectly trimmed measure), save to disk, edit in an external editor (with plugins, etc), reload and away you go. youre only limited by the internal 20bit buss resolution and your imagination! oh, and no native plugins although there are a few destructive DSP functions in the sample editor... basically very fun to use, if you ask me. not as hard as it looks. you can step input it all, or use a controller in some capacity although i havent tried it yet. no sync options unfortunately, but theres midi out, so you can couple it with a midi patchbay and theoretically control a number of pieces of gear from it. my idea of fun. (example of music made 100% in AST the oldschool way)

AST Features:

- 32 Channels
- Support of EMU8k, MPU401 (midi) In/Output, OPL3/FM and PC-Honker
- programm and use your AWE-card like an professianal sampler (like AKAi...) with the advantage of an integrated pattern-based sequencer.
- Direct hardware control about Filters, LFOs, Envelopes, Reverb and Chorus effects - Very fast Midi timing. Extremely low latency
- More than 40!!! different effects, even 16 Pitchshifters possible in realtime
- Groove and shuffle effects for every channel
- Dynamic track allocation
- High quality, fast and intelligent player-routines (sends only real necessary midi data)
- Use AWE-Rom samples or load *.wav's / FT2 *.xi's into the AWE-Ram (or load anything you want)
- User defineable font and colour style

System Requirements:

- Any 486 IBM compatible machine with at least 40 MHz and 1024kB RAM / 1 MB Hdd-space (prolly even less)
- DOS 6.2 or Win9x (no Windows2000)
- any SB compatible soundcard for OPL/FM and MIDI output
- an SB-AWE32 / 64 compatible soundcard with RAM onboard for using all the features

(c) Patrice Bouchard, Markus Feil and Alex Sidow 1996-2000


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the card is basically an eIII sampler engine with an FM chip and a talking chip, the rest of the card is a soundblaster 16... its 13 inches long! this is the oldschool jungle way!

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you can use a newer Sound Blaster AWE64 Gold card which has a much better signal to noise ratio, and even has a 20bit spdif output.

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theres an easy way to add up to 28MB sample ram to an AWE64 gold...

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i spent total less than $100 on this whole idea, including the computer.

if youre a fan of the sampling sound of the late 80s/90s, this method has that sound. the filter is pretty good, and the effects are base, but they can be done.

the other method is (are) an Akai MPC or other Akai sampler, or perhaps a Peavey SP or Roland S series. you name it, its been done. :wink:

vespesian
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Postby vespesian » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:17 pm

Automate/play with the Master Pitch (for all engines in Geist) alongside whatever BPM changes. Loads of fun.

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alien_brain
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Postby alien_brain » Sat Feb 04, 2012 12:42 am

hopefully that wasnt too much. i researched it a few years ago not having known previously how it was done n the early days. just some interesting info for you. there is a modern style tracker called renoise that will do the same things and more, i just feel nostalgic about ancient gear that was used to make such incredible music with samples. not to mention that this approach is about what you bring to it rather than what bell or whistle the tool has. not for the faint of heart. i think its always been about how much of yourself you put into your art.

MOK19
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Postby MOK19 » Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:31 am

That was awesome, Alien_Brain. I'm still digesting it. I do have some tracker experience; my first music software was Buzz.

Additionally, I agree that primarily depends on how much you put into it. Craftsman > Tool, in a huge way here.

Though, when you're first trying to figure it out, a little bit of emulation helps. ;)

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alien_brain
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Postby alien_brain » Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:53 pm

this is true. although trying to emulate someone like remarc is sorta ludicrous if not a lofty goal for a beginner. unless you have someone telling you how its done or you happen to make tame music on trackers already, you would be hard pressed to explain some of the tricks or methods they put in the music.

luckily you can use the same methods found in old jungle outside of the tracker environment. breaks are mostly cut to 8th note long slices, certain tricks involve a rudimentary time stretch that can be done on any sampler that allows you to advance the sample start with a modulator.

or you can even add a tracker style sequencing plugin to the modern VST environment.

the real beauty of cutting a sample up in a tracker style environment is that on most trackers (i think...?) you can access any of 255 start points in any sample you have loaded. this start point is represented by a hex value in AST. so, for every tick in your pattern you can specify a note value and a start point and a midi velocity. if you line up a number of notes that happen very quickly, you can step forwards and backwards through a sample as well as independently control pitch. whoever came up with that trick was thinking outside the box. bbbbrrrrrriiiiiiiillllllllliiiiiiiaaaaaaannnnnnntttttttt. of course its passe now days.

Kickflip
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Postby Kickflip » Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:41 pm

Great info on some old techniques there!

Putting that aside for the moment, my thoughts on the best way to get the retro slicing sound are as follows:

Don't use the timestretch knob, you're best off programming the patterns into Geist's pattern editor, and using the pitch automation lane to program the differently pitched snare.

Alternatively, another thing they used to do is premake a kit in their Akai with a set of prepitched snare hits.

For that classic time stretch sound, have a search for Akaizer - it's a little program aimed to replicating the old skool Akai time stretch, and it does the job pretty well. Used to be free too. It's now on v2 which may or may not be free, but think v1 is still available.

They wouldn't necessarily slice each individual hit, each key might have a couple of drum hits but start on a major one. For example the first key would be the kick and hat, the next key would be the snare and a hat, the next would be the 'chikachika' ghost hits, the next would be the second snare and hat. This makes it easier to replay a groove with a few keypresses, and leaves the rest of the pads available to put a few pitched snares/cymbals/Akaizer time stretched snares in.
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alien_brain
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Postby alien_brain » Sun Feb 05, 2012 3:28 pm

wow on that akaizer... that has the genuine jungle stretch sound for sure. thanks for the heads up!

JeromeG
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Postby JeromeG » Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:47 pm

akaiser is a gem! Nice find...


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