How to Use Alchemy to record some bass

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Choose in­stru­ment

Add a track to a song; tap Alchemy Synth in the Key­board panel. Tap the de­fault in­stru­ment (above the touch sur­face), pick Plucky Synth Bass, then Done. Set the key­board be­hav­ior to Glis­sando and the oc­tave to 0.

Set up key­board

Tap the Key­board but­ton (above the keys, third from the right); se­lect a size you’re com­fort­able with. Turn off Ve­loc­ity. En­sure you can see keys A2 to G3. If not, set the key­board be­hav­ior to Scroll, drag, then change it back.

Play some notes

Tap/hold some notes to get a feel for the key­board con­trols and the in­stru­ment. Ex­per­i­ment with drag­ging the fram­ing box as you play to hear how it can dra­mat­i­cally change the feel and tone of the se­lected in­stru­ment.

Turn on arpeg­gia­tor

Tap Arpeg­gia­tor (second from right) and turn on Run. You can ad­just the arpeg­gia­tor’s note or­der, range and oc­tave range. Hold down a key. No­tice the sound al­ter­nate be­tween that note and one an oc­tave higher.

Set oc­tave range

With the key still held down, tap the up ar­row next to Oc­tave Range, so it’s set to 3. The arpeg­gia­tor will play across three oc­taves, which sounds a bit more in­ter­est­ing. Now it’s time to get record­ing…

Record your bass

We’ll use a pro­gres­sion that works with the world in­stru­ments used last is­sue (is­sue 141). Tap the red record but­ton and then hold notes as fol­lows: E3 (beat 1); C3 (3); A2 (4); G3 (5); F3 (7); D3 (8); A2 (8.5).

Make ad­just­ments

If you find it tricky to get the tim­ing of the changes right, tap the Set­tings menu (the span­ner, top right) and ad­just the tempo. Re­mem­ber you can re-record your bass line as many times as you like un­til you’re happy.

Ex­per­i­ment fur­ther

As Alchemy is a MIDI in­stru­ment, it records note data rather than ren­dered audio. This means you can play your record­ing and then change how it sounds by ad­just­ing di­als, pads, or us­ing a new in­stru­ment.

Trans­pose notes

Tap the Track Set­tings but­ton (three slider icon, top left). In Track Set­tings > Trans­po­si­tion, ad­just the oc­tave to make your bass higher or lower. Go up a level. Un­der Out­put, tap solo to lis­ten back to your bass track.

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