Where to start?
The orange and blue lit buttons of the Maschine were one of the first draws. Its like a Monome but with all the functionality, build-quality and power one comes to expect from NI already built in. I’d been going through the mental arguments for some time. Is it an MPC, is it stand-alone, is it more than an expensive toy?
Well I got my hands on one, unpacked it, ran the install and plugged it in. Burst of orange and blue lights and then the baby’s live. First off, started loading single-hits from my hard drive into the pads. With 16 pads and 8 banks there’s plenty to be going on with. Lost a few hours there and then playing around with the samples.
Fast-forward to the next evening and I’m starting to get a better feel for the device. Found the Sounds option in the the software, now we’ve got whole kits that are automatically mapped across the pads. Strarted recording some stuff. Nice auto quantization made it sound sweet. Trying to work out how the Scenes are used to build the track, wiped patterns out of the grid a few times! Found the Pads option to load instruments into the pads to overdub bass/brass/pads etc. Ok, seemed a little weak. Exported an arabian beat I’d made into Logic, threw down some plucked World Inmstruments from Logic and already its sounding cool. Again, several hours lost to the flow. I’m beginnning to understand NI’s “Get Lost in the Flow” slogan pretty well now!
This is just what I need to produce some of the beats for the N2L/EN2EL/N23L side-project. What I didn’t mention that before ? Ah well, you’ll have to wait and see. Let me just say I’ve been listening to a lot of Dre and Eminem recently so it’s going to be very different from the Gothick vibe – no guitars for starters! Well, the lyrics for 10 tracks are in the can so its back to the Maschine for some more dope beats!