Welcome to the Make It New mix series. We’ll be regularly cataloging the sounds we feature each and every Thursday (and have been for 13 years!). Are you on Facebook and want to stay informed? Go here and click that “subscribe button.”
Coralcola came on board as a resident a few years ago now, and has been holding down opening slots and featured resident night mixes with authority. Here he is laying down two hours of slow-mo, chugging grooves in anticipation of the debut of Antal at Make It New. A night that will not soon be forgotten.
Working in a large session with many tracks can be overwhelming. Have you ever wondered how to solve this problem? Here are some ways you can organize your Ableton session to enhance your workflow and creativity.
1. Label Tracks
If all of your tracks are labeled to correspond with the instruments they represent, navigating you session becomes much easier. For example, if your track is named “BASS” instead of “2 Basic Sinelike”, then you will be able to easily find your bass track among all of your other tracks. Right-click on the track header and select the “Rename” option. It will then allow you to type in a new name for the track.
2. Color-Code Tracks
Assigning colors to tracks based on the instruments you’re using can be very helpful. Having a color to associate with different sounds makes it easier to quickly find tracks in your session. For example, if you color-code all of your synth tracks to be yellow, any time you look up and see that color you will automatically know you’re looking at the synth tracks. If you right-click on the track header it will open up a menu that has a grid of colors at the bottom. Just select the color square that you want and it will change the track header to that color.
3. Create Groups
Let’s say your working with a session that has a hefty vocal arrangement in it. This means you are going to have many vocal tracks to deal with. A way to declutter your session, if you have multiple tracks that fall under the same category, is to create a group. Hold down the “Shift” key and click on each track that you want to be included in the group. Once you have selected all of the tracks that you want, right-click on one of the selected tracks and choose “Group Tracks” from the drop down menu. This will put all of the tracks you selected under one group tab. You can hide the tracks in the group while you aren’t working with them to free up visual space in your session. The black triangle beside the group name will allow you to open and close the group when you need to access the individual tracks.
4. Add Locators
Locators can be added in the arrangement view of Ableton. Right-click in the grey space below the measure numbers and select “Add Locator” from the drop down menu. This will give you a grey triangle in the location that you originally clicked. Right-click on the triangle and select “Rename” from the drop down menu to label the locator. These locators can be helpful in identifying sections of your song, like a verse, chorus, or bridge.
After using these tips, your session should be much easier to navigate!
A man of many musical hats, Texas born, Detroit raised Matthew Dear has a wide reaching discography that takes in face melting techno as Jabberjaw, dark avant-pop under his own name and intricate minimal as Audion. Often with a gothic slant and full of curiousness, his pensive but playful music is an intoxicating distillation of many different influences, often with his own stylized vocals at the center.
“There are snippets of friends and family strewn throughout the mix. A lot of the vocal interludes you hear are from a portable recorder I’ve carried with me over the years.”
As co-founder of both Ghostly International and Spectral Sound, Matthew Dear has also been responsible for some of the underground scene’s most exciting new music, plenty of which appears here. Now more than 15 years, five albums and 20 EPs into his esteemed and always evolving career, Dear is exactly the sort of fascinating character that makes the very personal DJ-Kicks series so special.
Included along the way are three brand new and exclusive cuts from Dear himself, one under his own name and two as Audion. They are typically weird and intriguing cuts that tie the whole unhinged and freaky mix together. Also helping to add to the left-of-centre afterparty vibe are inclusions by artists as diverse as Thatmanmonkz and Matrixxmann, ItaloJohnson and Pearson Sound, Randomer and Simian Mobile Disco.
“I always have a lot of unreleased music laying around, those I included on here seemed to fit. A mix like this is always a good place to showcase my own productions, but I didn’t want to oversaturate it with my own stuff.”
Wholly timeless yet totally of its time, this is the first new work from Dear in a while. Once again, though, it proves that he is a master of subversion; someone who can head down a brain frying techno warren then effortlessly onto raw machine grooves via left of centre synth ditties and kaleidoscopic house music. In his considered hands, they all make perfect sense.
“I wanted to create a mix that could be listened to anywhere, and reflect a little bit of everything that I play. Whether you’re in your car, preparing to open the club, or having a bottle of wine with friends at home, this mix is for you.”
Time Out New York has a great profile on the Swedish pop sensation Tove Lo. Subtitled “The hard-partying, never-say-sorry Swedish pop star who’s primed to take over the States on her own terms,” it’s a complete illustration of the star on the rise.
“I do whatever I want. If I wanted to be bigger, I’d have to be more polished, but I wouldn’t be happy. It’s my choice.”