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I think I found the real origin of the "Landlord" stab
Old 1st March 2015
  #1
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Mr. Varaldo's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
I think I found the real origin of the "Landlord" stab

Being an old techno rave guy from the late '80s / early '90s and a long-time sound "detective", I'm always on the lookout for hints to what might have originated old classic sounds. Like many here, I've always been fascinated by the characteristic, ubiquitous synth stab heard in many Techno / House tracks of the era, for example in Landlord "I Like It", SoundFactory "Understand This Groove", or Outlander "Vamp". For younger viewers who are not familiar with that classic stab, it's this one:



A few years ago I bought a LinnDrum, and had MIDI installed on it by Bruce Forat. At the same time, I had bought from Bruce a demo tape (a CD, these days) with the official audio demos of all the Alternate and Individual EPROM sounds that were sold by Linn when the LinnDrum was in vogue (early to mid'80s).

I finally today gave a careful listen to this tape, renaming all the tracks properly, and look what I found in the demo for Violin, Orchestral hit, FM sounds and Tambourine?? (check out the mp3 below , the sound is at 00:31:

http://synthmania.com/Misc/From%20th...emo%20tape.mp3

Yes, that "FM Harpsi 1" definitely sounds like the classic stab, and it was produced way before Landlord (which was 1989). There's no date on the documentation that comes with the Linn sounds, but since Linn Electronics went out of business in 1986, and the DX7 came out in 1983, these EPROMs must have been produced somewhere between 1983 and 1985.



Since right before the harpsichord stabs there are other well-known DX7 FM sounds, there's no doubt they used a DX7 for all of those sounds in the EPROM. Hence, I immediately ran to my DX7 in my home studio and started experimenting with the "Harpsichord" sound. But no luck, it was definitely not that sound. That sound was too bright and different.

Then it dawned on me. Linn was an American company, they had a DX7 shipped for the American market. DX7 were shipped with different factory patch sets. In Europe/Japan they were shipped with ROM1A, in America were shipped with ROM3A (that also has the classic "What's love got to do with it" harmonica, btw). There is one patch on the American market DX7 called "25 CLAV ENS" that definitely sounds like that stab.

I messed with chord notes a few minutes, and played a regular Dmin chord. Wow, now it sounds very similar, but it's too clean.

Of course, that's because I'm using today's audio interfaces to sample the sound, very clean and hi-fi.

Hence, I put the sound in an editor, and simply converted the waveform to 8 bit... magic... now it sounds very similar to the Linn EPROM sound... of course, there are many other variables, who knows how and through what they sampled the original, (and that patch is quite dynamic too, so any subtle difference in playing will result in a very different tonality).

At any rate, in mp3 example below is the original taken from the Linn demo tape, and then my rendition from my DX7. Yeah, it's not perfect, it's not 100%, perhaps I should have used 4-bit and filtering, but hey, I'm doing this in five minutes here... but I have a strong feeling it's that one. They just called it "Harpsichord" in the EPROM but the patch is the "Clavichord" instead, (or Clavinet):

http://synthmania.com/Misc/Linn%20FM...0the%20DX7.mp3

I have absolutely no proof of this, as I'm using my ears only, but what I think happened is that sample somehow made it to some sampler's memory from someone back in the day who had that EPROM for their LinnDrum, it got copied and passed from hand to hand, and the rest is history...

Last edited by Mr. Varaldo; 2nd March 2015 at 12:30 AM..
Old 1st March 2015
  #2
Gear Guru
Very interesting!

Buddy of mine had a bit of an exchange with the "Landlord" and he said he couldn't remember what he made it on.

He said the patch was a mix of a harpsichord and sitar.
Two synths he had at the time were an ESQ-1 and DX-7 (I assume an MKII)

BUT! that Linndrum sample sounds spot on!
Wonder if that sample is on an ESQ-1 cart somewhere.
Old 1st March 2015
  #3
Jose Ramón Alvarado Villa
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
Great research! I think all of the technoheads back then probably sampled the Linn.

And one interesting coincidence - I was just listening to Orchestral Hit1 couple of minutes ago when building Linn 9000 set for MC-909. It had those exact same two tones/pitches. And i was like - will i put it in or not.
Old 1st March 2015
  #4
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lineofcontrol's Avatar
 

Nice work. You need to add that to your famous sounds page!
Old 1st March 2015
  #5
Gear Nut
 

fascinating, two up great work
Old 1st March 2015
  #6
Gear Head
 

Got to be
Old 2nd March 2015
  #7
Gear Guru
 
Yoozer's Avatar
Just emulated this with my TX7. The actual notes played are the D minor chord plus a D an octave lower as a bass note. Then I ran it through Decimort to reduce the bitrate, and through a pretty severely cranked The Glue (of Ableton itself). Freeze track, cut the important bits, load in Simpler, disable velocity, and voila.
Attached Files

outlander_vamp_confirmed.mp3 (626.5 KB, 10106 views)


Last edited by Yoozer; 2nd March 2015 at 12:12 AM..
Old 2nd March 2015
  #8
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Mr. Varaldo's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
That's correct, Yoozer, I was playing a min chord (the Dmin with the d one octave lower), but I'm not sure that one was the root key of the LinnDrum EPROM sample. I just went with the first pitch they demoed on the tape. I'm messing with the DX7 and it actually sounds more realistic a few notes up, like G minor up from that. Btw, your mp3 file doesn't seem to be working..
Old 2nd March 2015
  #9
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adydub's Avatar
 

That's awesome Mr V - I'd always assumed that line was some kind of mangled piano sample, but it sounds like you've found either the sample itself, or a bizarre coincidence of the original sound that was then played and resampled by someone else!
Old 2nd March 2015
  #10
Gear Guru
 
Yoozer's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Varaldo View Post
Btw, your mp3 file doesn't seem to be working..
Fixed it. Actually, I noticed in my demo that I had a D 2 octaves lower, not just one.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #11
Gear Guru
 
fiddlestickz's Avatar
screw the landlord when are we getting a new guess the synth comp..???

Old 2nd March 2015
  #12
Gear Guru
 
Yoozer's Avatar
Next mission: where'd the stab in this one come from?



I know I have it in my Korg TR-Rack, but where it it truly originate?
Old 2nd March 2015
  #13
Lives for gear
**** me true techno sample geekery!

Good work!

Apparently the Brazil Stab was sampled from
The beginning of a bbc QED documentary or similar. Will dig the link out of renaat talking about it
Old 2nd March 2015
  #14
Gear Addict
Cool. I always thought it sounded like a bright FM piano but had no idea where it originated.......Same with that one ^^^^^ Spectrum 'Brazil'. Years ago when I had a Roland D10, the editing of sounds used 'partials' as well as waveforms if I remember correctly, LA synthesis. Some of the partials by themselves or combined, had what I thought at the time, certain sounds like the one above. Not saying it's at all from such machines but hey....
Old 2nd March 2015
  #15
Jose Ramón Alvarado Villa
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoozer View Post
Next mission: where'd the stab in this one come from?

Daaang. Best early techno track ever !!!!!!! I totally forgot about this one.



EDIT: Wow. Just noticed David Morley listed as a producer. Well, i guess we should ask him.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #16
Jose Ramón Alvarado Villa
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Varaldo View Post
I'm messing with the DX7 and it actually sounds more realistic a few notes up, like G minor up from that. Btw, your mp3 file doesn't seem to be working..


We need more threads like this.

By the way, thought it might interest you. That stab in James brown is dead. I think i found the machine that is capable of producing very similar sound. On top of that it is a machine that was used in early techno. I'm talking about Kawai K1. It is not a preset, however while programming it i found a waveform that should be able to create that stab. Will research more. Machine is in storage currently.

Appears at 00:55: http://youtu.be/zIXqmt0zw3Y?t=55s
Old 2nd March 2015
  #17
Gear Guru
 
Yoozer's Avatar
JBID was the last bit of an ELO track.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #18
Lives for gear
 

Nice research!

Btw, I LOVE how all these all-time favorite synths sounds turn out to be... PRESETS!
Old 2nd March 2015
  #19
Jose Ramón Alvarado Villa
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoozer View Post
JBID was the last bit of an ELO track.
What's ELO?
Old 2nd March 2015
  #20
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lineofcontrol's Avatar
 

Electric Light Orchestra?



Funny how good the DX7 is, eh?
Old 2nd March 2015
  #21
Old 2nd March 2015
  #22
Jose Ramón Alvarado Villa
 
Don Solaris's Avatar
Old 2nd March 2015
  #23
Gear maniac
 
FlyingGeorge's Avatar
I do respect your attitude.

I haven't heard those tunes or that stab(I was born just before millennium), but I went thought those tracks and did some search around the subject.
Very interesting vibes.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #24
Funny that they called the sound "FM Harpsi 1" because it sounds nothing like a harpsichord.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #25
Wildfunk
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Varaldo View Post
I had bought from Bruce a demo tape (a CD, these days) with the official audio demos of all the Alternate and Individual EPROM sounds
Perhaps the Landlord just has sampled the chord directly from this tape!

The "25 CLAV ENS" sounds similar but i doubt that's the source...

Last edited by Wildfunk; 2nd March 2015 at 08:38 PM..
Old 2nd March 2015
  #26
What are the "Jungle Sounds" from mid-eighties? Birds, monkey sounds?
Old 2nd March 2015
  #27
Gear Maniac
 
Marty Gras's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BM0 View Post
Funny that they called the sound "FM Harpsi 1" because it sounds nothing like a harpsichord.
I see this all the time. Mostly Moog and Korg stuff saying flute sound and it's nowhere near. Sometimes the patch isn't even using the appropriate wave type for a given acoustic instrument emulation.

I was noticing this on the Magellen app for iOS just yesterday.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #28
Here for the gear
I just had a message from engineer who sent me the linn 1 demo sounds. I tried the clav ens from the rom3a bank, with the right bitcrushing you can get so so closed , I am convinced it is nothing to do with an ensoniq esq1, in anycase ensoniq esq 1 sounds are sampled from most like likely another source. I always thought years ago the sound has fm timbres to it.
Old 2nd March 2015
  #29
Here for the gear
Do you mean the sounds heard on the intro to Pacific 202 ?
Old 2nd March 2015
  #30
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Mr. Varaldo's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Why I think it's got to be something from that same DX7 bank: if one looks at the three sounds preceding the "FM Harpsichord 1" in the LinnDrum EPROM demo tape, there are FM Marimba, FM Bass 1, and FM Bass 2. If you guys look at the patches for the ROM3 bank A (I'm copying and pasting from BobbyBlues' excellent site DX7/Yamaha ROM3 you'll notice that there are patches for Marimba and two Basses. I haven't done a direct comparison yet, but I bet the other three samples belong to the three below. What I think might have happened is that the programmer made an honest mistake and wrote down "Harpsi 1" (which is in this bank, but it's not it) instead of the CLAV ENS... but yeah, let me reiterate that I have no proof of this and I'm just guessing.

01. FLUTE 1
02. HARPSICH 1
03. STRG ENS 1
04. BRIGHT BOW
05. BRASSHORNS
06. BR TRUMPET
07. MARIMBA
08. E.PIANO 1
09. PIANO 1
10. PIPES 1
11. E.ORGAN 1
12. E.BASS 1
13. CLAV 1
14. HARMONICA1
15. JAZZ GUIT1
16. PRC SYNTH1
17. SAX BC
18. FRETLESS 1
19. HARP 1
20. TIMPANI
21. HEAVYMETAL
22. STEEL DRUM
23. SYN-LEAD 1
24. VOICES BC
25. CLAV ENS
26. LASERSWEEP
27. TUB ERUPT
28. GRAND PRIX
29. REFS WHISL
30. TRAIN
31. BRASS S H
32. TAKE OFF
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