Croix-Rousse – A song made entirely on the Monologue and the Octatrack

I finally decided which new synth I wanted to include in the family. I was looking for a small analogue with great bass sounds, a keyboard, and that was lightweight. The choice fell on the Korg Monologue. I’m so impressed with what this small synth can do!

Limitations sparks new ideas

This time we had to make an instrumental track since we were in France and didn’t bring our gear for recording vocals. The monologue turned out to be a great companion to the octatrack. Once again, limitations sparks new ideas and ways to work. I played around with melodies and bass lines on the monologue, while Kai started programming some beats on the Octatrack.

Pattern by pattern

When I had something I liked on the Monologue, we recorded it to the Octatrack. Sometimes we recorded the midi sequence and then sampled the audio, so that we got a perfectly quantised sequence. But most of the time we just sampled the Monologue directly instead, for a more human, imperfect result. We were working fast and tried to capture ideas quickly.

Often we have a tendency to layer more and more parts to the same few repeating patterns. But the 8 audio tracks on the Octatrack filled up very quickly, so that forced us to make new patterns instead, simply because we constantly needed fresh audio tracks.

The recording

The patterns started to have a movie feel, a dash of James Bond and some mystical ambiance. When we were satisfied with the amount of sampled Monologue loops, we put it all together and made a recording. To make it less repetetive we also recorded some jamming on the monologue and only kept the parts that made sense in the mix.

Hope you want to give it a listen! Have a great 2018 filled with music!

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3 thoughts on “Croix-Rousse – A song made entirely on the Monologue and the Octatrack

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  1. Hiya πŸ˜‰ I’m new to music production and I decided to start my journey with Monologue πŸ™‚ I’ve been jamming and creating patterns on it for some time now and yesterday I decided I’d like to use some of the patterns I made as loops for my tracks. My question is, is it possible to save already made pattern as it is to Ableton? and what method of recording monologue would you recommend?
    πŸ™‚

    1. Hello, and congratulations with your Monologue. It is a really nice synth! You have two options when recording your patterns to Ableton. One is to record your pattern as midi. This would only record your pattern notes, though, not motion data.

      The other option (and what you probably have in mind) is to record your patterns as audio loops and then arrange them in Ableton afterwards. We use Cubase, not Ableton, and I don’t have the Monologue in front of me. But in general terms, this is what you need to do:
      1. Route your Monologue audio into Ableton.
      2. Set up a midi connection between your Monologue and Ableton (use either USB or the midi DIN ports).
      3. Make sure Ableton is midi clock master (it probably always is) and set the Monologue to be midi clock slave. (That means Ableton controls the tempo and the Monologue patterns will use that tempo instead of the internal one)
      4. Make sure Ableton send Transport Controls midi commands and set Monologue to respond to them (That means Ableton sends “Play” and “Stop” commands to the Monologue so that when you hit play in Ableton the Monologue pattern starts playing in sync.
      5. Record your pattern. A nice trick is to let the pattern play twice before stopping the recording. That way your second half of the recording is a version of the pattern where the end “wrap” seamlessly over to the start.

      1. thank you so much, you’re an angel πŸ˜€
        I joined you guys on fb and I’ll stick around, such a lovely vibe this blog has πŸ™‚
        your answer as well is so straight forward, confirms what I gathered reading bits and pieces yesterday night and solves my problem, thanks so much!

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