Our online community is the place for you to connect with us at Novation and other like-minded music makers. Here you can check in on our artist stories, get all the latest news, watch our most recent video releases and explore what we're up to on social media.
The team at Pigeons and Planes have compiled a selection of the best browser based music making utiliities available.
From a Rubik's Cube inspired TR-808 drum machine (pictured) to Tone Matrix, a monomone-esque step sequencer. These are yet another great way to kill (waste?) time online and perhaps a new way to find some creative inspiration for your next track.
Watch: 5 Ways to Create Depth in Your Mix
Producer and Sound Engineering instructor Ganesh Singaram has worked with some huge artists including Pharrell Williams, Kanye West, Brandon Flowers and Swedish House Mafia. Here he sits down with the Point Blank team to share some valuable tips and concepts that you can use to add depth and space to your mixes.
Want get your hands on over 36,000 samples?
Converse Rubber Tracks is a collection of community-based recording studios around the world offering free studio time to musicians. Their community based Sample Library is an ever-growing collection of high quality, free to use samples recorded at the studios. Featuring contributions from artists such as Machinedrum, Com Truise and Das Ding.
Get Legowelt's Smackos Tape Station
The legendary 'Smackos Tape Station' used to add grit and analogue flavour to many of Legowelt’s cosmic techno productions is now available to you. For free.
Just drag the Smackos Tape Station FX rack into an Ableton Live channel to give it some old school cassete deck character.
We think it's particularly good on drums.
Compatible with Ableton 9 and up.
Head over to Legowelt’s website and nab it now.
Rhythm Masters 50 minute Live set
UK based house music producers Robert Chetcuti and Steve McGuinness a.k.a. Steve Mac, joined forces creating Rhythm Masters in 1993. The duo have enjoyed a prolific career, creating remixes for many chart topping artists including Todd Terry, Michael Jackson, Junior Vasquez, David Morales, and Roger Sanchez. The duo split in the mid 2000s to pursue solo careers and have recently reformed with new material due this year.
Boiler Room Uncover Sessions (chapter 4)
In the chapter 4 of the ‘Uncover Sessions’ the Boiler Room team further explore the burgeoning Latin American electronic music scene. This instalment, made in collaboration with Mutek, features appearances from Atom and Tobias, Umor Rex Records boss Daniel Castrejón and friend of Novation AAAA.
Watch here. Or above, it’s up to you.
Watch: 67,5 Minut Projekt
60 Minut Projekt is a frenetic live drum ‘n’ bass project headed up two of Poland’s most prolific underground musicians; Macio Moretti and Piotr Zabrodzki with Jan Młynarski on drums.
Using a minimal rig, 60 Minut Projekt create savage, improvised performances without the use of additional loops and samples.
Watch them perform live in Cracow in this Boiler Room live set.
Ei8ht mortal sampling sins
Love it or hate it, sampling and the art of extracting and repurposing sounds is an integral part of many genres of music. The Musicradar crew have put together a guide highlighting ‘eight mortal sampling sins’ that we all need to stop committing right now.
From avoiding Cliché to the importance of timestretching algorithms, this is a useful guide for those new to the world of sampling and a good refresher for the more seasoned beat makers amongst us.
Read the guide here.
Watch: Meet The EraA Chicago Footwork Documentary
Meet The Era is a mini documentary that shows the current Chicago footwork scene from the perspective of the footworkers who are pioneering this genre.
Both a form of expressive dance and a unique, fast paced genre of electronic music; Footwork originated in Chicago during the 1980s and has influenced many popular sub genres of House and Garage and is evident in the more recent 'post-dubstep' sub genres such as Future Bass.
Courtesy of Thump
PIXELORD: Free Novation Mixtape
We recently spent some time in Russia with Pixelord, a music producer who is leading the vibrant electronic music scene in Moscow.
Pixelord has kindly created this mixtape of old and new works and unreleased gems specially for you, the Novation community. He has also given away the parts needed to recreate his classic track; ‘Rescue Cyber Party’. What a guy.
Also, we're giving away a Launchpad Pro to the person who creates the best performance of their remix of this track. Find out more about this competition.
Watch: 'How I Play' feat. KiNK
For their 'How I Play' feature, the team at DJ TechTools recently caught up with Bulgarian live electronic musician KiNK for a behind the scenes look at his setup. KiNK gives a detailed walk through each piece of gear used in his inventive setup and explains how he uses them to create his signature live performances.
Sónar+D 2015: Highlights
Watch the highlights from the last Sónar+D conference.
Sónar+D is an international conference organised by Sónar that covers the digital transformation of the creative industry. Targeted at professionals within the creative, technological and cultural industries, the aim of the conference is to facilitate the exchange of knowledge, debate, and talent.
Free UK garage samples
The distinctive, syncopated percussive rhythm of UK garage that pervaded the UK charts during the 90's has seen a revival and is once again present in clubs across the globe.
Amsterdam Dance Event 2015
ADE 2015 was one of the best yet for Novation. We were fortunate enough to have one of the busiest stands at de Brakke Grond, with crowds of eager music makers gathering to try out Circuit for the first time.
We met some incredible people and made lots of new friends.
Thank you to everyone who came along.
We caught some fascinating interviews and seminars. One of which was with Robert Hood; techno pioneer and founding member of the group 'Underground Resistance'.
"I had a limited amount of equipment - I bought it all from pawn shops in Detroit - so I had to squeeze everything I could out of it." - Robert Hood.
(Interviewed by Dave Haslam, ADE 2015)
OSCar Winner: Dominique Bray
Those who didn’t get the chance to watch our live Periscope stream would have missed us announcing the lucky winner of our fully restored OSCar synthesiser.
Mr. Dominique Bray from France is now the proud owner. In an email to us he expressed his gratitude:
“Old analog synthesisers are amazing to me because they have something 'magical' that makes them sound so lifeful and warm, and they are so fun to play with, some magic no digital synth or vst has. That is why winning this OSCar is so much amazing to me.”
He is understandably very pleased to have been chosen and is planning to kick start his musical projects using his OSCar. We will keep you posted on his new work.
Thanks to everyone who entered this competition and shared their studio setup pictures with us.
Anything Can Be Music: A Film About Matthew Herbert
In this mini documentary the team at Noisey meet up with pioneering electronic music producer Matthew Herbert. Herbert’s compositions often consist of sounds not traditionally associated with music and are the result of unusual recording methods; he has previously recorded Vietnamese coffee beans beneath the sewers of Fleet Street, he has used the sounds of human skin and hair and the sound of 3500 people biting an apple at the same time.
Here we see him preparing for a live show where he employs a way of ‘fishing for sounds’ from participating audience members.
Watch: Tokimonsta In Gear-Head Heaven
Tokimonsta’s innovative brand of cosmic, R&B infused beats have been released on both Brainfeeder and Ultra records, she has remixed some of LA’s key players including Shlohmo, Thirsty Fish and Daedelus. THUMP caught up with her at MOOG Audio in Toronto to discuss her career, her creative process and how her sound has evolved over time.
Launchpad Pro Game.
This highly addictive four-player game was recently developed during our Novation Hack Day in London. The objective is to use the eight round keys along your chosen side to extend a column to ‘eat’ the white tile. Your buttons will light up to indicate winning games, first to eight, wins the round.
The game (and original Launchpad Pro .syx file so that you can swap back) can be downloaded here.
Unplug your Launchpad Pro.
Hold the "Setup" button down while connecting it to your host via USB.
Your Launchpad Pro will now start up in "bootloader" mode.
Use the sysex tool to send your desired .syx file to the device MIDI port - it will briefly scroll "upgrading..." across the grid.
Wait for the update to complete, and for the device to reboot.
Ravenous Ravenous Rhinos, Starving Starving Snakes, Voracious Voracious Voles: call it what you wish. Just make sure that you remember to restore the original sysex file before you try to make music with your Launchpad Pro.
We want to see you play. Upload a video of yourself to Instagram and use hashtag #GamingOnLaunchpad