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Old 22nd May 2019
Lives for gear
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making beats since 88, never touched an mpc. i ended up with a command station which in certain areas is the future of the mpc and in other areas is outdated

i use it to sequence various hardware samplers, basically in that way they are one machine when used together. however, each of the hardware samplers is different, some with better sound, some with better timing, some that are a pain to sample on the fly yet sound incredible, others that can do on the fly sampling very easily but don't sound that great, and also some have native velocity response/adsr settings that just make it sound dope when you play the samples

this is about workflow. a computer can take gigabytes of hours of audio and give you endless options on the screen, all channeled through a mouse or controller. but none of them make on the fly sampling/auto placement as easy as some of these old samplers do. no matter how powerful or how many options the computer has, when i hear a snare on a record and i want it on a certain pad on my sampler right now as fast as possible, computers are useless. they only drain all creative energy when i have to train my eyes to the screen with all the options and the muscles in my hand/arm to use the mouse to find these options, or use the controller with a convoluted workflow that has been lost over the generations

and the timing also, once you start stacking things in a computer and adding effects, midi timing ESPECIALLY live recording of midi notes then becomes questionable. and in music timing is everything. some of these old samplers have better timing than others also. i guess this has fallen by the wayside as music shifted from sampling of physical media/live playing to programming pre-loaded sounds

and then we have the innovation in the command stations that i always go on about because it is the future, it is the correct way to design machines like this. the pyramid sequencer is basically that. you have pads for playing, and you have pads to represent your tracks. no confusion. in pattern creation and live performance, having both pads and track buttons that you can use to mute tracks, jump to a track, delete a track, always keep track of your tracks(!) it is the bomb for music creation. while recording, play a few notes on one track, jump to another and record a few more, jump to another and delete a track, copy and combine tracks, all while recording, and all represented in front of you with their own button so you can mix/mute them etc