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3. Dark, lay­ered atmospheres with Op­er­a­tor and Dune CM

Computer Music - - Cinematic Atmospheres -

1 Dark atmospheres are a sta­ple of cin­e­matic scores, so let’s cre­ate one from scratch us­ing Live’s In­stru­ment Rack. Cre­ate a new MIDI chan­nel, drop in an In­stru­ment Rack and drag in an in­stance of Op­er­a­tor. We’re go­ing to use Op­er­a­tor in sub­trac­tive syn­the­sis mode, so click the os­cil­la­tor rout­ing icon and se­lect the op­tion on the far right (four squares in a row). 2 First, we need to set up the wave­forms and en­velopes. Se­lect Os­cil­la­tor A and set its wave­form to Saw D. In the En­ve­lope sec­tion, change the At­tack to 1100ms and Re­lease to 4000ms. Fi­nally, drop the pitch of the os­cil­la­tor by turn­ing the Coarse dial to 0.5, and widen the sound out by turn­ing the Spread con­trol up to 100%. 3 Now head to Os­cil­la­tor B: set Coarse to 2 and Level to -8dB. Tune the os­cil­la­tor up in pitch by rais­ing the Fine con­trol to 500. Set the wave­form to Saw D, the en­ve­lope At­tack to 3000ms and its Re­lease to 4000ms. This is a good time to pull the master Vol­ume down to -15dB to give us some head­room. 4 Set Os­cil­la­tor C’s Wave to Noise White and push the Level up to -14dB. Smooth things off by pulling the Fil­ter

Freq down to 1.3kHz, and move the Res con­trol to 45%. Also, set the Freq<Key con­trol to 50%. This opens the fil­ter as we go up the key­board (known as fil­ter track­ing) so we can hear the higher keys when we play them. 5 Head to the LFO and turn it on. In the Dest. A sec­tion, de­s­e­lect but­ton A. This dis­con­nects os­cil­la­tor A from the LFO. We don’t want smooth, re­peat­ing move­ments, so change the LFO from Sine to Noise in the drop­down. Next, set the

Rate to 90 and the Amount to 40%. 6 Cre­ate a new chain in the In­stru­ment Rack, drop in Dune CM and ini­tialise the patch by click­ing the Bank B but­ton. Turn the Osc Mix con­trol to 50% and thicken the sound by turn­ing the two Fat di­als to 100%. Next, let’s se­lect the wave­forms. On Os­cil­la­tor 1, hit the Sel but­ton and se­lect wave­form 05. On Os­cil­la­tor 2, se­lect wave­form 19. 7 We need to tune both os­cil­la­tors to a dif­fer­ent pitch. On Os­cil­la­tor 1, turn the Semi dial up to +1. On Os­cil­la­tor 2, move it to +7. To set up the mo­du­la­tion, click the Mod Ma­trix 1>12 but­ton in the cen­tral panel. In slot 2, se­lect the source as LFO1, amount to +60 and des­ti­na­tion to Pitch Fine. 8 In slot 3, se­lect the source as LFO 2, amount to +45 and the des­ti­na­tion to Fil­ter Cut­off. This needs to sound ran­dom, so change the shape of LFO 2 to Noise. In the fil­ter sec­tion, pull the Cut­off down to 65% to give the LFO room. Now head to the Amp En­ve­lope and change At­tack and Re­lease to 80%. 9 Now we can add ef­fects. Drop Able­ton’s Sim­ple De­lay af­ter the ef­fects chain and turn the Feed­back up to

50%. Fi­nally, drop in a Re­verb and turn the De­cay Time up to 8.00s. Try play­ing a dis­so­nant chord which would nor­mally seem a lit­tle ‘off’. For this type of sound, the darker the bet­ter!

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