Most producers don't include instruments in their songs that are playing out of key. The reason being instruments playing out of key sound dissonant (or bad depending on your point of view) and can be unsettling to the listener. However when it comes to drums, many skilled producers load up a sample, put it in their song and process it with EQ, distortion, and compression without giving a second thought to pitch. This could be that many people assume drum sounds don't have a distinct pitch. These people are wrong.
Many producers don't fully understand the power of Clips in Ableton. Most see them only as containers for MIDI or Audio information. While this notion isn't wrong, clips can be used for so much more than production tupperware. If you learn to harness the power of clips you can add a whole new set of creative tools to your musical palate. Below are eight powerful techniques that take advantage of unique features of clips and will add interest, complexity and general gnarliness to your tunes:
Have you ever been working on your mix and a certain element just won't fit? Despite your best efforts, with gain staging, EQ, compression, phase-correction, or other effects, a certain sound falls out of the mix. What's the best course of action when all else fails? The answer is simple, change the element(s) that is/are causing the problem. One cleaver function in Ableton makes changing a given sound for another almost painless, "Hotswap."
What are some of the things that separate a truly skilled musician from a sequenced MIDI pattern? Many listeners would describe a programmed MIDI pattern as cold, sterile, robotic, or lacking emotion when compared to the performance of a human musician. The flourishes, the groove, emotion and feeling a skilled player imparts on their performance can be difficult to recreate on a computer even for skilled producers. A human player does not play perfectly in time or play notes with exactly the same velocity. The human player's performance changes in time as the music progresses and allows the player to impart emotion and movement to the piece. Thankfully, Ableton gives us a few tools that can add some spark and magic to our sequences MIDI patterns.