Some of you may already be aware of Diego Stocco’s work for Spectrasonics, various scores and his own idiosyncratic compositions. Now he’s developed a Live Set called Color Bots with a new technique he calls Adaptive Tonal Processing. A combination of cross-synthesis and harmonically complex musical phrases. Whether you want to get interesting sound design results without much knowledge or you just want to save valuable time, Color Bots can be useful for both professionals and beginners.
When you open the Live Set, you are presented with three empty audio tracks. The idea is that you can add your own clips on them that will be “coloured” by the rhythmic and dynamic profile of the palette clips. Then there are five audio tracks that contain clips in Session View labelled Palette 1-5, as well as three more audio tracks called Color 1-3.
After adding your own clips as the basis, you then select up to three of the palette clips to colour the sounds by dragging and dropping them onto the Color tracks. The processing happens on three return tracks that each contain two fully mapped audio effect racks. You can control the sound manipulation by the amount of audio you send there from the audio tracks, the macro controls of the effect racks as well as by playing the clips tonally from a keyboard.
Additionally, you will find a mastering audio effect rack on the master track to ensure that the results will sound great. The 50 palette clips are carefully chosen to give you rich harmonic material that colours your own sounds in interesting way. Of course, you’re not limited to using only these clips, but you can try any sound you want which essentially gives you endless possibilities. However, I noticed, it takes a bit of time to figure out which kinds of sounds work well. So experimenting can initially be somewhat disappointing until you get the hang of it. It’s still well worth it I find.
Instead of colouring audio clips you can also add your own MIDI tracks with instruments. And you can try different audio effect racks on the return tracks as well. Overall, Color Bots is an easy way to get interesting sound design results in no time.
Check out the video tutorial:
Color Bots requires Ableton Live 9.5 or later. No Max for Live necessary.