Today’s a blessed day: The Komplete Kontrol was finally delivered, after some mishaps with Fedex. And it is … big! I went for the full piano size 88 keys version of it I have to say, so … No surprise the package is as tall as I am.
Komplete Kontrol is a MIDI keyboard range from Native Instruments, and it is said to be on the high end. It is supplemented by an incredibly rich array of software sound libraries and plugins. I went for the ULTIMATE version it, not the most expensive but close enough.
Once everything is unpacked and plugged in, that’s when I realise how big it is, and how professional it looks! The hardware setup is pretty straightforward. The music libraries though all have to be downloaded from Native Instruments servers, which is a bit of a pain in the neck given the erratic state of my current internet connection with the NBN. Anyways, soon enough, I have a few libraries to play with, and the keyboard is perfectly integrated with Ableton Live.
I could not have made a better decision: Native Instrument and Ableton LIVE are a marriage made in heaven, and I am really enjoying the incredible software and hardware integration this is offering. To get me started, I indulge in a few tutorial videos, including a proper course on using Komplete Kontrol.
With this under the belt, I wonder … where do I start? This is incredible firepower I have under my fingers, and I feel humbled, undeserving, what if I’,m not worth all this sophistication and money? I experience a form of anxiety known to writers facing a blank sheet of paper, only difference being that my own sheet of paper costs in. the vicinity of seven grands, if I include the cost of the iMac.
Eventually, I remind myself that there’s no better way to learn than to mimic the best. In other word, I should Look at the music I like, and then just try to reproduce it, and “remix it”. To warm up my fingers, I subscribe to this nice musicality course called Melodics. Their gamified approach to learning music hits the spot and I get hooked in no time!
And then I think: Where should I start? After a while, I decide to go random and iterative.
First I pick a Synth, and it is TRK-01: It proposes fast, powerful kick and bass sound design, with intuitive sequencing and modulation.
The newbie in me watches this quick review from ADSR:
And off I go, with this first beat, I superimpose on a Morphyre visualisation.
Track #1 is a combo of TRK01 Kick+Bass, based on preset “Thiefhaus”.
Track #2 is TRK-01 Bass in isolation, with an “Acrobatic State” preset that I tweak just a bit with an Ubiquitous Arpeggiator.
It’s just enough for 60s of fun!