I am an enthusiastic user of Propellerheads Software. It all starts with ‚Rebirth‘ but the completely addiction began with ‚Reason‘ Version One. Since that time I perchase every available update. And as the software grows I grow with it simultaneously. I don’t understand why it is underrated by many people especially not since the mighty duo ‚Reason‘ and ‚Record‘ were brought into contact. The people from the Swedish HQ consulted all my wishes with this combination. Of course I always missed the opportunity to work with audio files in combination with MIDI. I found some ways to solve this problem in the early days but it was quite inconvenient. [Update 2012|09: Afer the release of Reason Version 6.0 Record was intergrated complete into Reason]
Voices were being raised that ‚Reason‘ looks like a toy software because it imitates real studio equipment graphically. But this is just the thing for me. I feel like a kid in the candy store to be honest. I start making music at the end of the 1970ies. My first electronic instruments were some Korg Synthesizers like the MS 10 or MS 20. All the control knobs and cables fascinated me a lot. So nowadays it is much more fun for me to connect the devices with virtual cables than with boring drop-down menus.
And because of the perfect ‚Remote‘ protocol of Propellerheads Software I can integrate as much MIDI-Controllers as I want to – and I want to. And so, here they are again my beloved control knobs, LED’s and Fader. A description of my setup will follow in Part two of this article.
The best thing about ‚Reason‘ is that they made my favorite software as a closed system. And I really do hope they will leave it that way for all time. First I never work with any software which is as stable as ‚Reason‘ and ‚Record‘. To be honest I can’t remember any crash up to date. Second off I don’t want to waste my time with thinking about what VST-PlugIn I have to check out next. It is a deception to think the more you get the better you are. It is exactly the opposite in my humble opinion. My creativity increases if I had to look for new ways to get what I want. Working that way brings so much unpredictable events to front. I love this accidentally surprises. That’s why I try to avoid using presets wherever I can, too. [Update 2012|09: Afer the release of Reason Version 6.5 Propellerhead integrates the Rack Extensions which are new devices one can buy separate from the online shop. You can test all devices 30 days for free before bying them.] Of course it is incorrect when I say ‚Reason‘ is a closed system. With the possibilities of ‚Rewire‘ you can connect ‚Reason‘ to any other DAW you want, but I don’t want.
By this time ‚Reason‘ has so many different devices. There are still some which I don’t have used up to date. Of course I have my favorites. In the first place I love the NN-XT Sampler. As I already stated I don’t like using presets. But I do use some of the really good ‚ReFills‘ of Propellerhead. But just the ones of their real instrument libraries like the hypersampled ‚Drum Kits‘ or the Strings.
Apart from that I prefer to create my own samples and soundlayers. I always got my ‚Handy Recorder Zoom H2‘ with me. Any time I hear something interesting I will record it on the spot. Then I cut it in pieces, create single sounds, loops and REX-Files with Propellerheads fantastic software ‚ReCycle‘. Which leads me to my next favorite device the Dr.Rex or better the Dr.OctoRex since the latest update. I am really into experimenting with REX-Files. And the Dr.OctoRex leaves nothing to be desired.
The possibilities of free routing whether it is audio, Gate or CV are endless. Creating own FX-devices with the combinator is extraordinary comfortable. And by the way I love the opportunity to individualize the look of the ‚Combinator‘ which I did with my own logo. Of course I make abundant use of the bread-and-butter devices like the good old ‚Subtractor‘ Synthesizer or ‚Redrum‘ to name just a few. In some of my songs I use up to 200 devices. Imagine what this would cost in a real studio surrounding. And even if I use so much devices and load tons of different samples into one song the CPU-Usage is still very low.
I’m willing to admit that once I was unfaithful and tried to work with ‚Live‘ from ‚Ableton‘. Even though there are some interesting features in ‚Live‘ ‚Reason‘ don’t have, me and ‚Live‘ never got friends. I hate to say that, but I prefer the merchandise of ‚Ableton‘. I wear my ‚Ableton‘ hoodie on a daily basis but I wear it in combination with my ‚Reason‘ Cap. On balance ‚Reason‘ and ‚Record‘ is the perfect tool for me.
If you want to use this software I beg you to get it legally. It really is affordable. The prices for the updates are moderate and are worth one’s salt. The people of Propellerhead do a good job and they deserve the reward.
Please apologize my english as I am no native speaker.