Let the Ideas flow
Ideas View and Arranger make sketching longer ideas more creative and satisfying
The Ideas View was added to Maschine last year in version 2.6.5, expanding the software’s arrangement and composition capabilities pretty significantly. Rather than completely replacing the existing Arranger view, the Ideas View offers a space for users to experiment with Pattern combinations without affecting anything that’s been created in the Arranger. In essence, Ideas view is a software version of Maschine Jam’s Pattern triggering interface, but the approach will also look familiar to users of the clip launchers in Ableton Live or Bitwig Studio.
In Ideas View, Groups are laid out in columns from left to right, as they are in the mixer window. Each Group has a column containing individual patterns in vertical stacks, similar to Ableton Live’s clips. Tabs along the top of the Ideas View toggle between Scenes, each of which can be set to trigger any combination of Patterns from each of your groups.
Scenes and patterns can easily be duplicated to experiment with adding or removing elements. Because Ideas View encourages users to work in this way, it’s worth splitting different sounds across separate Groups as much as possible. If you stuff your full beat, bassline and chords into the 16 Sound slots of a single Group, you’ll find yourself deleting sequencer data just to create a variation. With separate Groups for your basic beat, bass, chords, toplines and so on, it’s much easier to quickly mix and match variations.
Although Ideas View acts as a separate entity to the Arranger, the two aren’t entirely disconnected. The Arranger is now populated with Sections. Each section can be assigned a Scene via a dropdown menu. This makes it easy to sketch out a rough arrangement and then expand and develop it later. Try piecing together a rough timeline from a few simple elements, then, with your rough arrangement in place, create duplications and variations of each element, and use multiple Scenes and the dropdown for each section to mix and match your different versions.
Sections can be dragged around on the timeline to extend their length within the Arranger.
Maschine might not yet be capable of full DAW-style arrangement – it can still prove difficult to, for example, add and edit events that don’t sit exactly within the preset time signature – but the combination of Ideas View and Arranger make sketching longer ideas in Maschine much more creative and satisfying.