Ableton Rack #41: AfroDJMac Steel Water Bottle Synth

I love making music with unusual sounds!  I found this article and video from Synthtopia to be very interesting.  It's about Trent Reznor's work on the Girl With the Dragon Tattoo soundtrack.  He says they were breaking down the wall between sound design and music.  I think this is a really cool way to think about composition.  Taking the unordinary and unusual sounds all around us and creating music from them has always fascinated me.  This week's Free Ableton Live Rack does exactly that. I recently bought some stainless steel water bottles.  I wanted to stop throwing out a zillion plastic water bottles everyday, plus I've heard lots of bad stuff about the plastics leaking into your drinking water, Ahh!  So as the law of unintended consequences goes, little did I know I was also buying myself some new synth sounds.  The bottles make a pretty interesting sound when you hit them, and depending on how much water is inside, things can vary quite a bit.  I recorded a sample of a nearly empty bottle being hit and mapped that out across the keyboard in Ableton Live.  It has a far-out, metallic kind of sound and as the sample gets looped, neat things start to happen.  I've set up a bunch of macro knobs to allow for some detailed control over the sound.  All in all, the result is a pretty unusual sounding instrument.  I purposely put together macro mappings and parameters that will give this instrument a glitchy, messed up kind of sound.  Plus it is BPA Free! Have fun with it and I hope you enjoy :) Thanks and spread the word!

PS if you are in the Brooklyn area, come out to the Charleston Saturday 1/7/11 and say hello.  I'll be playing live :)