Sample Insights: Abstract Rhythms

Abstract Rhythms Main Image Blog

Abstract Rhythms was designed with the intention of helping aid producers add movement, swing and texture to their pre-existing drum loops.  When using a four four x kick pattern this can be especially difficult hence the pack looked to fit around these solid elements but add some shuffle.  

With this in mind, we decided to ask it's creator Jack a few questions about his production set up, any tips for producing and just how the collection was exactly made.  

Hi Jack, great to meet you, how’s it going? 

Yeah good thanks - just busy as ever with multiple music projects but no complaints this end! :)

Firstly, tell us a bit about your personal set up?  

My personal set up is quite modest but it has evolved from many years of experimenting.  I’ve had numerous pieces of gear, hardware, instruments and synths over the year but feel comfortable now I’ve settled on a nice drum machine, a few synths then Ableton plus some Adam monitors. Oh and my trusty location recorder - it's become a staple to my production process.   

Tell us a bit about the main concept for the collection? 

The idea for the collection was to create something really useful that hopefully solves some of issues that producers face.  Having written techno and electronica over the years I often found that grooves felt a little square and boring, especially when using a four four kick pattern but struggling to make them move.  

The idea is that you could drop these percussion samples over the top in order to compliment the pre designed beat adding some swing and texture that might have previously been missing. 

Can you go into some detail on how the collection was produced? 

Yeah of course.  The collection was made using a variety of source material ranging from numerous location recordings, foley hits, drum machine one shots, drum loops and also manipulating some live drum recordings I had form a few years ago.  
I then built a collection of side chained FX returns in Ableton Live that allowed me to jam live with the loops, processing them as I went to get different results.  

I could then re-edit the recordings to create new textures and layers adding sounds where I saw fit.  There was always a basic kick pattern running in my session to make sure I didn't over cook the loops and make them unsuable in a mix.  

I like using the Ableton macros to control numerous controls at once providing lots of changes and movements as the sounds progress - all controlled using my Ableton Push.  

The difficult bit was ensuring the loops were’t too busy and got in the way of the original groove.  

After discussing the project with Ryan we had the idea of providing a mono version of the samples in case they were becoming too obstructive in the mix.  Lots of systems are in mono anyway hence it’s sometimes good to accommodate this, especially in the low end as the collection is designed to compliment your pre-existing drum loops, not get in the way of them or clash. 

Who would you say the collection is suited toward? 

I’d say the collection is pretty broad in it’s appeal but the tempo ranges certainly works well with house, techno & electronica.  I played around with them at different tempos chopping and warping them and they hold up nicely when slowed down which is cool.

The ‘Organic’ and ‘Driven’ folder certainly seems to fit nicely with big sounding techno and makes the mix feel a lot more 3-D and expansive.

Any future packs we should be looking out for? 

Yeah many.  We’re discussing ideas for extending the Elements series and hopefully trying to solve a few more issues.  I’ve loads of ideas for more one shot collections also which I think people will find super useful.  

Thanks again mate and congratulations on such a great collection. 

You can check out the full collection including the demo Here

The Touch Loops team. 

Touch Loops