Back when I worked on the ‘Dust’ album, one of the pieces of equipment that I was most inspired by was my Fractal Audio Axe FX Ultra. It was an amazing box, and really the only time I’ve ever really ‘bonded’ with an FX devices. I found its workflow perfect for how I think about FX and how I want to work with them.
Unfortunately, it was a victim of the post-separation, pre-divorce financial crunch that required my studio shrink. Then the Axe II came out, and I considered upgrading…but I was still in the financial crunch.
Now, a few years later, the Axe FX III is out and, honestly…I couldn’t wait anymore. I sold off odds and ends in the studio that had been replaced by software and pulled the trigger on Friday. It will get here some time next week, and I’m sure you’ll be hearing me spout about it for a while (and, hopefully, hear it in my work).
Also changing is my eurorack system. I’ve been digging into it much harder than I have in a long time and I’ve been learning it all over again and getting a sense for what it is I want to do with it. As luck would have it, STG Sounds Labs got my order of a Switch and Post Lawsuit Filter on the way and they should also be here this week. I preordered the Switch when it was announced and the PLF has long been on my short list as it completes my STG Filter collection (from an audio quality standpoint alone, they are some of the best you will find in any format).
On the eurorack, I’m starting to get a sense of what’s going to happen in that second case. It was overflow for while, but now it’s slowly starting to have a true purpose. It’s becoming the ‘weird’ side of the rig, where I put the modules that I don’t use every day, but I wouldn’t ever want to be without. It will also be it’s own complete system, having enough components for a voice or performance. Eventually, I want to replace the case, though with a second hand Gemini or Lexington…but that’s for future discussions.
On the software front, the single best thing I’ve done recently was to upgrade an old license of Specrasonics Atmosphere to Omnisphere 2.5. It’s not quite having my Korg Kronos in software, but it’s been a missing piece in the software stack that I’ve been wanting for a LONG time. I don’t see the need for a standard S+S synthesizer in my hardware rig with this one.
Another change has been my return to using Ableton Live. I’m still on V9, but considering the upgrade to 10. I think it’s because i’m using the modular more again and it’s just the right environment for the way that workflow happens. I don’t know..I love reason as a virtual studio environment, but it just doesn’t take in audio from the modular and make it easy to edit after that. Their time and pitch correction UI’s need a lot of work.
There’s also some other good things happening, but I’ll save those for another post.