December 10th, 2014

Nord Rack 2 & DR T's KCS


Experimenting with sounds using the Nord Rack 2 and DR T’s KCS software on the Atari STE for sequencing.

Having used the Nord Modular G1 for so long, returning to the Nord Rack 2 is really enjoyable. Interestingly there is a more immediate hands on feel to it, being detached from any computer system, but then the sound is harder to get inside and really tweak, due to more simplistic controls. Still, I do love that Nord sound. Expect more.

DR T’s KCS, is a great software for the Atari STE, using really unusual sequencing techniques, similar in some way to old tracker software, although this doesn’t follow the same timing techniques, favouring more abstract number input. It is a really detached and clumsy way to input time begining, end, length, on, pitch, midi channel and velocity, all individually for a single note. If you want to then loop that note, you have to input a second row, a loop point in time and to loop that sequence you changed ‘on’ to ‘de’…I have no idea what that stands for. You can also then set up some simple rules for playing a second or further sequence wtihin any given sequence based on probility. The cool thing is after maing a few sequences, all with there own independent lengths and timings, you can simple play them individually via this beautiful minimal play screen (picture).

I love the fact that such a simple set of instructions are really time consuming, which insists sequences are kept pretty basic. To top it all off, I also like that the Atari with its monitor is so very big, and seemingly doing such a simple thing. I think the key is, it does this one or two things, and it does them well, unlike many other new products that have a tendency to do everything. In this time, we are lucky in some ways to have a box that does lots of things but still manages to do all of them very well, however, personally I prefer less options, as it makes for betting music.

Looking forward to tomorrow.