Day three of Ableton‘s #loopathome and it was a strange one. The challenge this time was to follow a list of instructions and see what the end result would be.
The first line of instructions read… “Go to the kitchen and listen to the sound of the refrigerator…”. I really wasn’t sure what to expect after that start, but I thought I’d go with it.
Unfortunately, our fridge is really quiet so I had to resort to the freezer instead. After struggling to try and synthesise it’s noise, I decided to do an impersonation of the humming sound which turned out to be a stroke of luck as it also provided the source material for the melody lines too.
Where is this going?
By the time I got to step three of the instructions, I was contemplating giving up as I just couldn’t see how a piece of music would emerge from this. But I decided to stick with it and duly followed instructions by sampling the sound of a can of beer, a glass and some of my recently delivered graze snacks. (Or at least, that’s how I interpreted it)
Suitably refreshed, I set about editing the raw sounds and came up with some great ring-pull percussion, fizzy hi hats and a lovely bell like sound from the beer glass handle. Slamming the (empty) glass on the desk gave me the kick drum.
Once I had a basic beat laid down, it was time to add some melody lines. Taking the humming sound as my starting point, I managed to coax some beautiful glassy noises from my voice.
For the interweaving melodies, the technique I used here was to play the same note progression three times, but each time an octave higher and at an increasing tempo.
Even if I do say so myself, I was really happy with the finished track and it gave me goosebumps the first time I played it through.
So, here is ‘Out from the cold’.
What a great weekend of experimentation! And I might even have beaten the writers block I’ve been (silently) suffering with for the last couple of years. Thanks Ableton!