Computer Music 197 – Easy Guide to Ornaments, Clean Up Your Recordings Cover Feature, KMI QuNexus Review

Computer Music 197 – Easy Guide to Ornaments, Clean Up Your Recordings Cover Feature, KMI QuNexus Review

CM197 Cover 500The November 2013 issue of Computer Music is now with us, and in a bumper issue for me this month, I have a total contribution of 10 pages in there. Starting with the huge ‘Clean Up Your Recordings’ cover feature beginning on page 34, it’s an info-packed guide dedicated to rescue remedies; procedures to turn to when things haven’t gone so well at the recording stage and you find yourself needing to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, so to speak. I contributed six pages to this feature, complete with video, detailing how to smooth out harsh guitars with EQ, create double-tracked parts from a single take, fix snare resonance and hi-hat bleed on drum tracks, and replace dodgy drum sounds with high-quality samples.
Elsewhere in the issue, my regular music theory Easy Guide deals with ornaments this month, and we’re not talking about the antique Belgian ceramic cats on your mantelpiece either. To find out what I’m on about, turn to page 74 or watch the accompanying video (on the cover DVD or downloadable from the CM vault), in which all is explained.
Finally, I round off the issue with a double-page review of the remarkable KMI QuNexus USB MIDI controller. An intriguing, rubbery keyboard with all manner of tricks up its tiny sleeves, you can read what I thought of it on page 90.
Loads of other good stuff this issue as always, so check it out today!

Computer Music 195 – DAW to DAW, Syncopation, Logic Pro X Review

Computer Music 195 – DAW to DAW, Syncopation, Logic Pro X Review

CM195 Cover 500Computer Music Issue 195 is now available, and this month I’ve contributed three items – my  regular Easy Guide column, a feature tutorial and a review.
First up, if you’ve ever tried to export a project from one system on one computer and open it successfully on another, you’ll know how tricky it can be. So, on page 55 you’ll find my DAW to DAW feature, a handy five-page guide to transferring projects between different platforms. Encompassing MIDI files, effect and instrument presets, project files and the creation of stems, it takes in file transfer options like Dropbox before showing how to import a set of stems originating from Logic Pro X into a Cubase project.
Elsewhere, Apple’s announcement of Logic Pro X was one of July’s big news items, sending magazine editors and freelancers alike scurrying to shoehorn coverage of the app in before their deadlines. I was lucky enough to snag the official CM review, which starts on page 88 and continues for 3 pages of in-depth examination and honest critique.
Meanwhile, my regular Easy Guide column takes a more rhythmic approach this month, examining the basics of syncopation and what it means to today’s electronic musician. You can find the column in its regular slot on page 70, and the accompanying video can be found on the cover DVD for the print edition, or downloaded from the CM vault for digital editions.
So, with the usual shedload of other good stuff to be found in this issue, it makes for a cracking holiday read. Speaking of which, I’m just off on mine, so have a great summer everyone!

Computer Music 194 – Beats Cover Feature, Easy Guide to Suspensions, eaReckon CM COMP-87 & CM-EQUA 87

Computer Music 194 – Beats Cover Feature, Easy Guide to Suspensions, eaReckon CM COMP-87 & CM-EQUA 87

CM194 Cover 500I’m very happy to announce that the September 2013 issue of Computer Music is now available, containing my humongous Beats cover feature. Starting on page 30, it’s a 14-page juggernaut covering the basics of how to program drums in a number of genres, including house, drum n bass, dubstep, trap, hip hop and RnB. It also delves into sourcing the right sounds for each genre, and I show you how to program beats using both MIDI and audio region-based techniques. It’s a proper mine of information, and on top of all this, there are no less than 10 videos to accompany the walkthroughs, and the usual array of audio examples and MIDI files too.
Elsewhere in the issue, on page 68 you’ll find the third instalment of my music theory Easy Guide column – this month you get two pages exploring suspensions and suspended chords, and there’s a video to accompany the 12-step walkthrough featured in this piece as well.
Continuing on the video theme (it’s small wonder that I got RSI last month – Repetitive Screencast Injury!) I got to contribute this month’s DVD tutorial feature on the marvellous free plug-in that’s being given away with the issue – the eaReckon CM-COMP 87 virtual analog compressor. Over 18 steps I take you through all the parameters and controls, demonstrating how to use the unit in a number of real-world scenarios, and you can see it all happening as there’s an accompanying video for this too!
Last but not least, in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it kind of way, I’ve also managed to shoehorn in this month’s Quick Guide feature on pages 16 and 17. This month it’s all about eaReckon as I take you on a tour of the front panel of the CM-EQUA 87 parametric equalizer that comes free every month as part of the CM plug-ins collection.
So, as you can see, I’ve been a busy boy this month, with a total of 21 pages and 12 video tutorials in this one issue – my single largest contribution yet (I think)!

Computer Music 193 – Vocals Cover Feature, Harmonisation, Zebra CM and Nektar P1 Review

Computer Music 193 – Vocals Cover Feature, Harmonisation, Zebra CM and Nektar P1 Review

CM193 Cover 500The August 2013 issue of Computer Music is out now, and in a packed issue for me this month, I’ve written the cover feature guide about how to get great vocals by various different means, and what to do with them once you’ve got them to make them sound epic. Spanning a whopping total of 13 pages, it covers:

• Tweaking vocal samples to fit your track
• Recording vocalists
• Using online vocal session services
• Using vocal compression and effects for a professional sound
• Comping a perfect vocal from multiple takes
• Beefing up backing vocals
• Arranging ad-libs using a sampler
• And loads more…

All this is, of course, accompanied by the usual throng of videos, audio examples and step-by-step walkthroughs to guide you through the processes involved. The feature starts on page 32, and I’m really proud of it. A lot of work went into it, and the CM team have made it look fantastic, so many thanks to Lee, James and everybody involved.

This issue also marks the 2nd instalment of the ‘Dave Clews Easy Guide’ music theory column. This month I attempt to de-mystify basic harmonisation – in other words, I show you an easy way to find the chords that work best with any given melody, using a twelve-step guide and, of course, a video too. You’ll find the column on page 72.

Elsewhere in the issue, on page 102, you get to read what I thought of the Nektar Panorama P1 control surface with deep integration with Reason and Cubase. The verdict might not be what you’d think!

Finally, if you turn to page 16, you’ll find my 4-page, in-depth guide to all the features and controls of the brilliant u-He ZebraCM synth that comes free with the mag every month as part of the 30-strong CM Plug-ins suite. This synth really is amazing considering that it’s a giveaway – this alone is well worth picking up any single copy of the mag, packing a sonic punch that you would have had to shell out hundreds of pounds for not even five years ago.

So if all that isn’t reason enough to head into Smith’s for a copy, or download the digital version via Newsstand or Zinio, I don’t know what is!