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"Because" Beatles synth reproduction
Old 12th November 2009
  #1
"Because" Beatles synth reproduction

What would be the best synth to go to in order to reproduce the electronic sections of this song?

I'm sure that it was originally generated on some early, monstrous looking modular system, but what are some modern-day alternatives?

Any patches (or quickly listed settings) on the Voyager that could get me close?

Thanks so much!
Old 12th November 2009
  #2
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Mark Kaufman's Avatar
 

Best bet would be the EastWest "Fab Four" soundbank. Ken Scott oversaw all the sounds for that one. All the "Because" patches are included: Fab Four at Sweetwater

But of course, that's a bit of an investment for one tune. Still, there is a 2 for 1 deal right now...they do it right when it comes to quality.

This topic freaks me out a bit, as I just did a cover of this a month ago. I didn't try to exactly match the main harpsichord-like organ they used, so I just played my Roland piano live on a harpsichord setting. But my online pal did a great job of matching the Moog synths using his Nord Electro:

Kaufman's Because cover

Good luck with it!
Old 12th November 2009
  #3
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RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rszanto View Post
What would be the best synth to go to in order to reproduce the electronic sections of this song?

I'm sure that it was originally generated on some early, monstrous looking modular system, but what are some modern-day alternatives?

Any patches (or quickly listed settings) on the Voyager that could get me close?

Thanks so much!
The synths on that song have a very distinct Moog filter sound, so you could do well with the Voyager. For the horn-like arpeggios try some slightly detuned sawtooth waves and set up a horn-like envelope on your amplitude ADSR--- Set up a similar envelope for your filter, which should be fairly low resonance. Now for the twist. Increase your attack time on the amplitude ADSR, and decrease the decay time on your filter ADSR. The idea is to reach a point where the sound is fading in as the filter is closing down. Fool around and find an interesting balance---the effect is almost like a bowed horn.

Anyhow, I'm doing all this from memory, not having "Because" in front of me. But those are some factors to experiment with. You should not have to buy these sounds, and I would encourage anyone getting into synths to at least learn how to program the crap out of a MiniMoog (Voyager is the same, right?). If nothing else, you'll be popular at parties. I was playing an analog synth at a local music store one day and in about fifteen seconds turned a french horn sound into a Oriental sounding bell, and you'd have thought the people watching me were discovering fire for the first time.

Have fun, and curses to the DX7 which turned synth programming into library science.

-R

btw, Arturia has a Moog V virtual instrument that gets pretty close and gives you more options than a Mini.
Old 12th November 2009
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by RKrizman View Post
The synths on that song have a very distinct Moog filter sound, so you could do well with the Voyager. For the horn-like arpeggios try some slightly detuned sawtooth waves and set up a horn-like envelope on your amplitude ADSR--- Set up a similar envelope for your filter, which should be fairly low resonance. Now for the twist. Increase your attack time on the amplitude ADSR, and decrease the decay time on your filter ADSR. The idea is to reach a point where the sound is fading in as the filter is closing down. Fool around and find an interesting balance---the effect is almost like a bowed horn.

Anyhow, I'm doing all this from memory, not having "Because" in front of me. But those are some factors to experiment with. You should not have to buy these sounds, and I would encourage anyone getting into synths to at least learn how to program the crap out of a MiniMoog (Voyager is the same, right?). If nothing else, you'll be popular at parties. I was playing an analog synth at a local music store one day and in about fifteen seconds turned a french horn sound into a Oriental sounding bell, and you'd have thought the people watching me were discovering fire for the first time.

Have fun, and curses to the DX7 which turned synth programming into library science.

-R

btw, Arturia has a Moog V virtual instrument that gets pretty close and gives you more options than a Mini.
Exactly what I was looking for. I'm not doing a cover of the song so it doesn't have to be perfect, but I do intend on using the patch for some soundtrack work (I just can't get enough of that old school "A Clockwork Orange" Moog goodness). Thanks for the patch info.

If anyone else has some tips to help me nail down this sound, it would be much appreciated!
Old 24th May 2010
  #5
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multmin's Avatar
 

Crazy bump, I know.

From The Beatles as Musicians: Revolver Through the Anthology by Walter Everett (1999). Page 259.

"The first, a sawtooth wave modified in emulation of a horn, doubles the guitar part at the song's climax (1:30-1:43,
center). The 'horn' patch probably added some noise alongside the sawtooth, and both sources were led to
voltage-controlled low-pass filters regulated by separate envelope generators. This would have allowed the noise to have a
faster attack and decay than the slower-to-open, long-sustaining sawtooth would have. It may also have had a bit of
regeneration to simulate the horn's natural resonance around 500 Hz and a touch of reverberation. The second and third
patches sound simultaneously in the song's conclusion (2:12 to the end); on the left, an envelope generator with a slow
attack regulates a low-pass filter, causing the upper partials to open up in sequence on each note, and a simple
triangle-like wave is heard on the right channel."


Now, I'm using an Alesis Micron, BUT...I've gotten something that sounds like the second Moog patch used in "Because." Experiment with the following settings (although some of these are unnecessary but I listed them anyway) and see if you can tweak them better (cause I'd love to know how to improve it).

Polyphony: monophonic
Unison: one voice/note
UsnDetune: 2 cents max
Portamento: always
PortaType: gliss fixed
PortaTime: 21.41 ms
AnlgDrift: 16%
Osc Sync: off
FM Amount: 0% (don't think this matters)
FM Type: exp 2 -> 1 (don't think this matters)

Osc 1: Pulse
Waveshape: +0%
Octave: +0 octaves
Transpose: +0 semitones
Pitch: +0 cents

Osc 2: Tri/Saw
Waveshape: +0%
Octave: -1 octave
Transpose: +0 semitones
Pitch: +0 cents

Osc 3: Sine
Waveshape: +25%
Octave: -1 octave
Transpose: +0 semitones
Pitch: +1.5 cents

Pre: Osc 1 level: 95%
Pre: Osc 2 level: 31%
Pre: Osc 3 level: 18%

Filter 1:
Type: lowpass mg 4pole
Freq: 609.4 Hz
Res: 68%
Keytrk: +75% note->freq
EnvAmt: +14% env2->freq

Filter 2: Absolute freq
Type: bypass
Freq: 10 kHz
Res: +0%
Keytrk: +100% note->freq
EnvAmt: +0% env2->freq

Post: Fltr 1 Lvl: 80%
Fltr 2 Lvl: 0%
Preflt Lvl: 0%
Preflt Src: osc 1
Flt 1 Sign: positive

Out: Drive Type: Compressor
Drive level: 49%
Pgm Level: 100%

Env 1: Atk Time: 5.6 ms
Slope: -exp
Dcy Time: 142.4 ms
Dcy Slope: linear
Sus Time: hold
Sus Level: 100%
Rel Time: 1.708 s
Rel Slope: +exp
Velocity: 0% vel->env
Reset: On every note
Freerun: off (do sustain)
Loop: off

Env 2: Atk Time: 239.1 ms
Slope: +exp
Dcy Time: 296.6 ms
Dcy Slope: +exp
Sus Time: hold
Sus level: -38%
Rel Time: 152.9 ms
Rel Slope: linear
Velocity: 47% vel->env
Reset: On every note
Freerun: off
Loop: off

Env 3: Atk Time: 0.5 ms
Slope: linear
Dcy Time: .52 ms
Dcy Slope: linear
Sus Time: 10.62 s
Sus Level: -27%
Rel Time: 2.0 ms
Rel Slope: linear
Velocity: 87% vel->env
Reset: on every note
Freerun: off
Loop: attack/delay

LFO 1:
TempoSync: Fixed rate
Rate: 6.108 Hz
Reset: key mono
M1 Slider: 100% m1->LFO (this slider makes it brighter)

LFO 2:
TempoSync: Follow tempo (tap tempo on-board the Micron, I believe)
Rate: x16 (64th note)
Reset: mono (per pgm)
M1 Slider: 0% m1->LFO

S/H: TempoSync: follow tempo
Rate: x16 (64th note)
Reset: mono (per pgm)
Input: LFO2Saw
Smoothing: 48%

Track: Input: Velocity

Mod 1 Source: LFO1 Sin->Pitch
Dest: LFO1 Sin->Patch
Level: x +0.7%, y +0%
Offset: x +0.7%, y +0%

Mod 2 Source: m2 Slider -> Flt1Freq
Dest: m2 Slider -> Flt1Freq
Level: x = +28.7%, y = +0%
Offset: x = +28.7%, y = +0%

Last edited by multmin; 24th May 2010 at 06:35 AM.. Reason: Reference from book
Old 25th May 2010
  #6
Lives for gear
 

I believe that Abbey Road had a Moog IIIc when they recorded that record.

That would make it the same Moog oscillators, filters, etc.. as the Wendy Carlos "Clockwork Orange" synth which a greatly expanded Moog.
Old 25th May 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
it was the band's synth, not the studio's.

but it was certainly a modular Moog.

those Moog filters and oscillators are distinctive sounding, but the BIGGEST thing you can probably do to get close is to use a mono synth with a few oscillators on each note.

A Mini Moog or Voyager would do it pretty well
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"Because" Beatles synth reproduction-tumblr_kvzsv39mcq1qzci65o1_500.jpg   "Because" Beatles synth reproduction-beatles-moog-synthesizer.jpg  
Old 25th May 2010
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

I believe the Moog modular actually belonged to George Harrison.
McCartney got to play it really well.
Check out his use of the ribbon controller on the "maxwell's silver hammer" solo.
Old 25th May 2010
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunrobot View Post
I believe the Moog modular actually belonged to George Harrison.
McCartney got to play it really well.
Check out his use of the ribbon controller on the "maxwell's silver hammer" solo.
That is just portamento and not a ribbon controller.
You set the tracking of the oscillators (the master) to GLIDE between pitches in stead of just following the exact voltages generated by the KYBD.
You can hear the same stuff on all kinds of Moog (and other synth) solos of that era.
Keith Emerson's "Lucky Man" solo has the same thing going on.

BTW, Keith Emerson's solo in "Lucky Man" was almost completely lifted from a Dick Hyman Moog solo.
I actually discussed this with Mr. Emerson once (1977?)
As I recall, his reply was that he was pretty much influenced by the New York crowd that had the first Moog rigs.
That group would include Walter Sear.
Old 25th May 2010
  #10
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vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

I love the song and think the vocal harmonies are stunning, but at the risk of being flamed to a cinder I was never that wild about the keyboard sound. I'd probably have gone for a regular piano or maybe a real harpsichord.
Old 25th May 2010
  #11
Gear Addict
 
Jake's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vincentvangogo View Post
I love the song and think the vocal harmonies are stunning, but at the risk of being flamed to a cinder I was never that wild about the keyboard sound. I'd probably have gone for a regular piano or maybe a real harpsichord.
If you haven't already, check out the remixed version of Because on the Love album. I actually prefer this version to the original on Abbey Road.
Old 25th May 2010
  #12
I'm sure most of you know this, but the harpsichord sound was the Baldwin electric harpsichord.
Old 26th May 2010
  #13
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vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jake View Post
If you haven't already, check out the remixed version of Because on the Love album. I actually prefer this version to the original on Abbey Road.
I knew the Anthology one which is more or less the same. Somewhere between that and the original would have been interesting. Possibly even to an electric guitar. 'George! Do you maybe want to try the tele?' heh
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