Today let’s take a nice little look into the world of The Echo. New to Reason 6, this is one of 3 new effects which were much anticipated by the User Community (Do we all remember posts with subject lines reading “We need better effects in Reason”? I do).
After working with the Thor step sequencer, and in honor of Music Making Month at Propellerhead Software, I posted a challenge on TSOR (The Sound of Reason): Create an entire song without the main sequencer in Reason. So here is my attempt at a song without a Sequencer. And I’m here to say, it can definitely be done!
This beautiful little patch was contributed by Mick Comito, and it recreates the ReBirth Pattern-Controlled-Filter effect, but in the form of a Combinator that can be used in Reason and Record. I am thrilled that Mick came up with this idea and put this little gem together. If you get a chance, have a look at it and try it out. It’s really something interesting that can be used as an insert effect on any audio you throw at it.
I’m sure most of us have used the Matrix or Thor Step Sequencer to some extent. But how often have we thought about using our keyboard to trigger those patterns? I know I’ve never given it much serious thought, since I usually sequence all the parts into the main sequencer. But this time I’m going to explore the possibility of triggering patterns from our Keyboard. This has a lot of “live play” applications.
Just when you thought it was over. . . You were wrong! I’ve decided to extend this series of tutorials to explore a few things that I didn’t get to within the track I built. I could probably go on for 10 more parts to go over all the possible things you could do with the Matrix. But I wanted to focus on a few areas and explore them in a little more depth. So here’s a few things beyond the track, which you can do with the Matrix Step Sequencer.
In this tutorial, I’m going to finish up our Matrix song, and then explore the differences between the Matrix and the Thor Step Sequencer in a little more detail. It’s important to note the differences between the two and how one is not necessarily better than the other. Although I would argue that Thor’s step sequencer is much more advanced from a programming standpoint. I think the Matrix still has a lot to offer and still provides a lot of possible uses. So don’t shelve it just yet.
Now we get to some fun stuff: How to use the Matrix in a few different and interesting practical ways. To that end, I decided to build an entire track using nothing but sound devices that are controlled by Matrixes (Matrices?). This way, we can explore some of the practical uses of the Matrix along the way.
In this tutorial, I’m going to work with the Matrix and build a track by step sequencing. Egads! I hear the purists gasp, as they turn away in disgust. But rest assured, I’m merely presenting this as a creative idea to force you to think about alternative ways to build your songs. Take from that what you will. In the end, I hope this shows you how the Matrix, and step sequencing in general, can be a powerful ally when you compose your tracks.
This is a problem that plagued me for a long time but with Thor, I found a very easy workaround. The idea is simple. I wanted to gain access to more than 32 patterns with a single Rotary on a Combinator. For the longest time I couldn’t figure out how to do it. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks and I had one of those “of course!” moments. I mean come on. Doesn’t everyone feel limited with only 32 patterns accessible from a Combinator rotary? How about 64 patterns?
Turn a Combinator into a 61-synth drum kit that spans the range of the Matrix pattern sequencer so you can use the Matrix to trigger your drum hits. Yes it’s massive. Yes it’s crazy. And yes, you should try it out! Why? Because apart from being time consuming, it’s dead easy to accomplish. And it doesn’t have to break the CPU bank.