Some reasons why I love elastic drums so much

I’ve mentioned elastic drums on many occasions before. You’ve probably noticed that. It’s an app I’m very fond of, but why? Well I’m planning to answer that here. 


I’m a big fan of drum machines but specifically drum synths. Samples are fine but most of all I love using synthesis for drum sounds. There aren’t too many drum synths and far fewer really good ones so finding a really top class drum synth is a joy. Elastic drums is just such an app. 

So why is it so good? Simply put it is just so versatile and flexible. In fact you might even say it’s elastic. 

So let’s take a look at what makes elastic drums so good. I’m not going to run through its features in oSome sort of coherent I rder. I’m going to tell you the features that I like.

First off, automation:
I love being able to automate parameters and with elastic drums you can automate everything. All parameters for each drum sound can be automated with total ease. It is a complete dream. I love it. 

And then of course there’s randomness:

We all have times when there’s just no inspiration around and at those times a little bit of randomness can be just the ticket.  Elastic drums has a wonderful range of randomness built in. But it isn’t just random randomness, if that makes any sense to you. Elastic drums gives you options for randomness, and I like that. Here’s what you can randomise:

  • Random sequencer – Very handy for some pattern variation
  • Random instruments – For hopefully interesting sounds
  • Random instruments and sequencer
  • And finally, random everything!


So, those are two of my favourite features of elastic drums but that really is just the tip of the iceberg. Elastic drums has so much to offer, and I suppose most of all, it sounds great.

So why should you try out elastic drums? That’s maybe what you’re asking yourself. Well if your looking for a drum machine app that gives you nice natural or realistic drum sounds you can stop now. Elastic drums isn’t going to be for you. However if you’re looking for a drum app that’s going to give you almost complete flexibility to create unique drum sounds then you’ve found what you’re looking for. Elastic drums is it. 

The sound design possibilities in elastic drums is fantastic. It has a lot of presets to get you started, but actually making sounds in Elastic is a doddle. There are some nice categories to work things out, but if you’ve ever used a drum synth, or for that matter any type of synth you’ll find yourself right at home.

So what does it actually sound like? Have a listen …


So, if you like what you hear, what you’ve read, you should get it. If electronic drum sounds are what you like, you’ll never look back …

Why Elastic Drums is completely awesome (if you didn’t know already that is)

Let me start by saying that I really love drum synths. I think that the first drum machine I ever owned was actually four drum synth modules and a sequencer running them. It was hand made too. Ever since then I’ve loved drum synths and iOS has its fair share of them. However, there are a few that really keep me coming back time after time.

The first of these was tweakybeat (App Store link), and I still think it’s a brilliant little drum synth. I’m patiently waited for the MIDI clock update which will make it even better, and I really hope that it won’t be too long now. The next, and in fact the app that is my current favourite for making drum sounds is SeekBeats (app store link). Seekbeats is incredible. What you can do with it in terms of sound design is brilliant.

So, enter Elastic Drums. I have to say that I’ve been completely impressed by this iPhone drum machine. In terms of sound, in terms of design, and in terms of functionality. It is amazing.

What’s so good about it? Well, for starters the range of sounds you can get from it. It is superb. Basically there are 6 drum sounds. Each one can be a different synth engine ranging from kick, hat, snare, clap, square, fm, fm4op, wobble, grain, or tom. Enough to be going on with? Then on top of that each engine has specific parameters for tweaking. Each drum sound can be panned where you want it, and send to two FX. But it gets even better, each parameter for each drum sound can be automated individually. This gives amazing possibilities for creating some really great synth drum tracks.

There’s more too, a good mixer and export options etc. It’s audiobus ready too.

I can’t praise this drum synth enough. All it needs next is MIDI clock sync, which is apparently coming in the next release and it’ll be perfect in my view.

If you don’t know it, then I urge you to take a look. It’s a great app.

Elastic Drums arrives for your iPhone

Elastic Drums has arrived on the app store at last! Here’s everything you need to know …

Elastic Drums is a music app with 6 channels of synthesized drum sounds, a step sequencer and 4 fx channels, all tweakable in an elastic way. The sound range is from analog “oldschool” beatbox to the weirdest effect drone soundscapes.

Features:

  • 6 synth channels with 10 different percussion synth engines (kick, snare, hit, clap, tom, … fm, grain)
  • 12 parameters for each synth engine
  • automation for each parameter via knob recording or velocity
  • 4 send effect channels with 2×11 mono effects and 2 x 9 stereo effects
  • automation for all of the 8 possible effect parameters via xy pad
  • master effects (stutter, delay, compressor …)
  • 16 step sequencer for the 6 channels, each with it’s own tempo multiplier & length
  • record audio and export to Soundcloud or Audioshare
  • email audio recordings and presets
  • iOS 8 supported

Because all sounds get generated in realtime, the app is cpu heavy! iPhones 5 and greater can handle it with no problem, on iPhone 4s and iPad 2 effects 3 and 4 get switched off by the engine automatically to save some cpu power.

Plans for upcoming versions:

  • genuine iPad version (landscape instead of portrait)
  • Audiobus support
  • IAA support
  • midi support
  • new sequencer features (rolls, etc.)
  • new synth engines (tom tom, sampler, etc)

Elastic Drum is out at an introduction price of $3,99 instead of $7,99

Gumdrops for iPad arrives

Looks like an interesting development in the drum app space …

Gumdrops takes your beats to the next level with the power of a 64 track / 32 step sequencer combined with the expressiveness of a hand-crafted instrument.

Features:

  • Inter-App Audio
  • Audiobus
  • AudioCopy/Paste
  • MIDI Clock
  • WIST
  • SoundCloud®

I am a drummer and the idea for Gumdrops came to me when a friend and I were discussing making beats using devices like the Roland TR-808 and the Native Instruments Maschine. Gumdrops exists because tapping out beats on pads in time is very hard to do and programming in steps on a sequencer then playing it back to see how it sounds is boring.

When I’m on a drum kit I can play quarter, eighth or sixteenth notes easily with either of my hands and feet. If you have your right hand holding steady eighths on the hi-hat, introducing your left hand in between produces sixteenths. Then removing your right hand leaves eighths but on a syncopated pattern. This sort of natural pattern adaptation is what makes Gumdrops so revolutionary.

There are eight groups of eight pads on the board. By default, each group is assigned to a single sampled sound. The two pads at the bottom of a group are half notes, then moving up to quarters, then eighths, then sixteenths. The left column of pads is filled with the patterns that would be played by your right hand if you were on a drum kit, and the right column has what would be played by your left hand. Playing both the left and right together produces a pattern twice as fast. You could think of the left column as down beats and the right as up beats. So playing a pad in the right column will sound funky and off beat. Playing a pad in the left column will sound solid and on beat. Making up combinations of different patterns is easy by just tapping multiple pads.

Of course Gumdrops offers so much more than the defaults. You can edit the 32 step pattern on all 64 pads. Set the velocity for each step by just dragging across the pattern with your finger. Assign samples to pads by recording directly or by AudioPaste. You can synchronize with other apps and equipment using MIDI clock. Record and apply effects using Inter-App Audio and Audiobus. Upload your recordings to SoundCloud®.

All product and company names are ™ or ® trademarks of their respective owners. WIST is a trademark and software of KORG INC.

Special thanks to David Demeter of The Drum Lab, Sahir Hanif of Masters of Maple, Brady Drums, and the awesome beta test team.

Gumdrops costs $4.99 on the app store:

Boom 909 arrives from Pulse Code Inc arrives for your iPad

Boom 909 integrates one of the most popular drum machines of the 80’s into the modern mobile producers workflow.

With Boom 909, getting the classic 909 drum sounds into your music has never been easier. Audiobus compatibility, background audio, and audio export options allow Boom 909 to fit into your music without slowing you down.

Personalize your beats with the sound of the 909!

Features:

  • Step sequencer
  • High fidelity audio
  • CoreMIDI
  • Audiobus and background audio modes
  • Record and export live performance to Soundcloud, Audio Copy, email and iTunes file sharing
  • Compressor
  • Swing
  • Overdrive

Boom 909 provides the superb audio quality found in our other Pulse Code apps. Along with the classic drum sounds, Boom 909 has a built in compressor that is tuned to add punch to your drum beats. Soft saturation overdrive rounds out the signal chain adding warm crunch to your beats.

Using Boom 909 with Audiobus allows you to add any number of Audiobus compatible effects as well as record your beats into the app of your choice. Writing beats is easy by using the internal step sequencer or trigger the drums with CoreMIDI. Control your groove with two swing variations.

QUALITY HEADPHONES / MONITORS RECOMMENDED

BOOM 909! is priced at $0.99.

G-Stomper Rhythm arrives for Android

Based on G-Stomper Studio this is a sample based Android drum machine, and it’s free too. You can find it on Google Play via the developer’s own site.

SeekBeats: How to videos

If you don’t know SeekBeats then you really should. It’s one of the best drum machine / synths on the app store and it’s excellent.

This is a series of videos form the developer behind SeekBeats showing just how easy it is to use.

SeekBeats on the app store:

DrumPerfect 1.01 brings separate track export and more

Here’s what’s new in the latest version of DrumPerfect:

  • Separate track export now supports mono rendering.
  • Added BPM tap pad and up/down buttons.
  • Improved edit fields for user input.
  • Several bug fixes.

Musikmesse 2014: Bastl Instruments

Each module is connected using a small 4 pin connector and nice triangular velcro patches on the sides of each box.

If you’re looking for pure tones and big string sounds or anything then these are probably not the modules you’re thinking of. However, if you like nice raw glitchy lo-fi synth sounds then you’re going to love these things.

I had a brief play with the  Bastl Instruments modules and they’re pretty good. I didn’t have time to really get acquainted with the interfaces at all.

But I did play with their stick keyboard. Now that was fun! I still don’t know quite why they have a keyboard made with sticks, but it certainly got a lot of attention at Musikmesse.

One of the things I wanted to establish by taking a look at Bastl Instruments offering was, would I buy them? The answer, yes, sadly I’m afraid that these lovely little modules are just the kind of thing I would love to play with and integrate into the stuff I make.

Bastl Instruments stuff ticked the following boxes for me …

  • Build quality: Very high, nicely made and solid feel.
  • MIDI: The little MIDI module gives you control over all the modules that you connect together
  • Sound quality: Whilst I only heard these at the show, and it was noisy to say the least, I could certainly get a feel for the kinds of sounds you can reproduce, and I really like them
  • Modularity: Well these modules certainly fit together easily enough, and you seem to be able to connect them in any sort of configuration you want.

If I have on reservation it is how stable the connection is going to be. The four pin connector isn’t particularly hardy and the devices are held together by velcro. I know that I’m not likely to be using these in a very mobile environment or expect them to handle a great deal of movement, but it still a small area of concern. However, I don’t think it would stop me from starting my own collection of Bastl Instruments modules.

So, overall I think that these modules are pretty cool. They certainly get the thumbs up from me. Of course it just adds to the temptation and constant drain on my wallet!

All the same, I wish Bastl Instruments every success with their modules and hope that the show was really good for them. I think we’ll be hearing a lot more about them over the next few months.

BOOM 808! arrives from the makers of Modular

Boom 808 integrates one of the most popular drum machines of the 80’s into the modern mobile producers workflow.

With Boom 808, getting the classic 808 drum sounds into your music has never been easier. Audiobus compatibility, background audio, and audio export options allow Boom 808 to fit into your music without slowing you down.

Personalize your beats with the sound of the 808!

Features:

  • Step sequencer
  • High fidelity audio
  • CoreMIDI
  • Audiobus and background audio modes
  • Record and export live performance to Soundcloud, Audio Copy, email and iTunes file sharing
  • Compressor
  • Swing
  • Overdrive

Boom 808 provides the superb audio quality found in our other Pulse Code apps. Along with the classic drum sounds, Boom 808 has a built in compressor that is tuned to add punch to your drum beats. Soft saturation overdrive rounds out the signal chain adding warm crunch to your beats.

Using Boom 808 with Audiobus allows you to add any number of Audiobus compatible effects as well as record your beats into the app of your choice. Writing beats is easy by using the internal step sequencer or trigger the drums with CoreMIDI. Control your groove with two swing variations.

QUALITY HEADPHONES / MONITORS RECOMMENDED

BOOM 808! is priced at $0.99.

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