Sharing the Music – Shatter Spell

Music is a force that can bring us together. It invokes shared emotions, ideas, and hopes. This is exactly why I created Shatter Spell and why I’m now making it “free/by donation”.  Thank you to everyone that has supported or checked out the album. Much gratitude.

Grab it atsubaqueous.bandcamp.com


I made this album with the hopes of creatively inspiring myself and others. Its an immersive world with emerging sounds that I’d love to see in the hands of others and can use your help.  Please share the album to friends and those you’d think would enjoy the journey. If you do, I’ll share an unreleased remix of Niyaz with you. The remix actually inspired the album.

Just tag @subaqueous on Facebook or if you send it to friends just message me back and I’ll send you that private link.

Much appreciation,
Isaac Cotec aka subaqueous

By | 2017-12-12T11:32:24+00:00 December 12th, 2017|Producers Blog, Subaqueous News, Events and Music|0 Comments

Loop In Review – Ableton Loop Music Summit

I had the opportunity to make it out to Berlin for Ableton’s music summit called Loop. The event left me inspired, helped grow my creative network, and gave me a lot of ideas to take into the studio. In this article, I am going to be sharing my thoughts on the event, highlights, and some review videos at the end. To start, I want to share my highlights of the event and what I think made it an amazing experience that I will want to come back to every year.

Collaboration:

I’ve gone to a lot of conferences over the years. Almost all of them are top bottom classes where you are listening to lectures. Sometimes there are panel discussions to get people engaged, but they don’t quite do it. Loop is on a whole other level when it comes to getting the attendees to collaborate. The event included open roundtable discussions where groups of strangers had structured conversations. There was open meet up sessions and rooms full of instruments that people could jam on. (image below is of me helping out the “Jam Room” with a 20 person set up. All sorts of gear and technology to play with). I loved seeing collaboration being such a strong aspect of the event. 

Diversity:

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Recording Multi-track with Ipad and Zoom H6

While working on my new Subaqueous Album, I came up with an idea. I wanted to record vocals with Marya Stark  but not in the studio. I wanted to trek out to a remote place in the woods and dive deep into the music. After much experimenting, I found out a way to use the Zoom H6 and the Ipad to record. We were able to do full multitracking, layering, and even editing out in the woods and it all fit in a backpack.

Here is the video walk through. Below that, I have some links to the app and gear used.

Here is a list of some of the things you might need. (more…)

How to escape the 8 bar loop and finish more tracks

Written by Daniel Dixon, content writer for Outro.io

We’ve all been there before—you’re writing a track, the separate elements are falling into place, and a steady groove has emerged. But when it comes time to arrange the loop into a full track, things start to fall apart. You’ve become too entrenched in the loop to take it somewhere new, and you’re left feeling stuck.

Not knowing where to take your track is a common crux for many producers, leaving us with folders full of incomplete projects. There are, however, many ways to avoid this from happening—check out these seven tricks to help you escape the 8 bar loop and finish more tracks.

1. Use a reference track

Listen to a great track within the style you’re trying to create—how did the producer structure it? Drag and drop the track into your DAW, and use locators to make note of where it changes (intro, drop, breakdown etc.), using them as guidelines for your own music. After doing this a few times, you’ll stop needing the reference, and start adding in unique twists and developing a signature style.

Create a reference track, change it’s output to ext. out 1/2 (your master output) so the reference track doesn’t run through the mastering chain. Then mute the track—you don’t want it to play while yours does.

Add Locator:

 

Adding a Reference Track:

 

2. Make Loop Variations

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Updates 432 Live Pack – New Instruments and Manual

I decided to level up the 432 Live Pack.  I spent a day making an updated version. The New Version is made in live 9.5 and will work with 9.5+ There are also a few new features.

The first big feature is a more in-depth user manual. I’ve gotten questions of how to manage presets with the Live Pack and decided to make a walk through.  Another big update is 5 new 432 Presets. I took some of my free instruments (the Toy Piano, Sub Bass, Kalimba thumb piano and others ) and turned them into 432 instruments.

If you already have the 432 Live Pack, then these updates are free. Just login to your account and go to My Account -> downloads to download the Live Pack.  When you buy a Live Pack from me, you get unlimited downloads and updates. If you don’t have the 432 Essentials Live Pack, check it out. 

Feww… been a good day. Now back to music making.

By | 2017-06-28T19:49:29+00:00 March 21st, 2017|Producers Blog, Subaqueous News, Events and Music|0 Comments

Silk Drop 8Stem Remix Contest

I have had the pleasure of working with 8stems. 8Stem is an interactive audio format that allows any listener to remix music right inside their app. I have been making some of the remix packs for the app, and just uploaded the Silk Drop track ‘Closer’.

You can check out the track and remixes at: https://8stem.com/SilkDrop. 8stem is doing a remix competition and offering you a chance to win a Subaqueous sample pack or Ableton lesson.  If you do a dank remix you will get $60 of awesomeness from the site.

By | 2017-06-28T19:49:32+00:00 March 20th, 2017|Producers Blog, Subaqueous News, Events and Music|0 Comments

Best Office Chairs for Music Producers

Two months ago I got a back injury. Since then I have been working on my overall back health and decided to level up my studio with the one thing that effects my everyday life… My chair!  If you spend more than 10 hours a day in your studio/chair then it is worth the investment to get a chair that will help you sustain a healthy back during your whole career.  I should have done this ages ago.

I did a lot of research on office chairs. Here are my top picks after trying many of them out at local stores, and eventually buying one on amazon.

My Top Office Chair Pick

Price
Build Quality
Ergonomics
Best office chair for the price

I wanted to start with the Office Chair I ended up buying. There were a few things I was looking at for a chair. First of all, I wanted it to be around $100. I also wanted it to be breathable, not sweaty, and good for my lower back.  After a month of searching, the Midway Mesh Office Chair fit the bill. I’ve had this for a few weeks and love it. The cushion is comfortable, it has many different height adjustments, and was a really good price. (more…)

Bitwig Studio 2 Coming Out – First Thoughts

Bitwig just announced Version 2 to come out in February 2017. I’ve been reading about this on forums, and they just officially announced it.

I made this video to share my first thoughts on Bitwig 2 and what I hope to see in the update. There are also so interesting moves by them around pricing and subscription models.  Enjoy:

 

 

To read more on Bitwig 2 go to: https://www.bitwig.com/en/home.html

New Silk Drop Remix EP

A few months back I hosted a remix contest for my new project Silk Drop. We had around nine hundred remixes turned in. Wow… After we picked the winners I worked with a handful of artists to create our first Remix album. The album includes two remixes from the contest as well as 5 others from collaborators and friends. I also did a Subaqueous remix of King of Beasts.

Here is the remix album for streaming on bandcamp:

If you are more of a SoundCloud guy, check it out here: https://soundcloud.com/silkdrop

Really stoked on how this turned out. Thanks so much everyone and I hope to have more remix contest coming up soon.

By | 2017-06-28T19:50:18+00:00 January 12th, 2017|Producers Blog, Subaqueous News, Events and Music|0 Comments
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