Hey, software drum machines aren’t the only ones who get new synthesized drums – now hardware owners can, too.

If you had to explain the Elektron Analog Rytm drum machine to someone quickly, the answer was already pretty easy – it’s about the sound. Well, in an OS update quietly dubbed “1.30,” Elektron just added a whole lot of new sonic possibilities, in the form of twelve new machines and synthesis models.

Want bass drums? There are three of them.

Snare? Check.

New metallic and ride and hat sounds? Sure.

Impulse. Noise.

Not only are there new models, but loads of parameters inside each of them, so any one of those models gives you a lot to play with. You also aren’t restricted to using these as drums, per se – with all those options in there, you can also treat these as synth voices and make basslines or anything else you can think of. (The Elektron folks show off some nice options with the bass drum, for instance.)

Add in FM-style sounds in Impulse, and you can make some beautiful, ringing timbres.

Check out the video for some great demos and tasty noises:

I just love this machine; it’s been great to watch it come into its own.

For anyone finding dance music dull, I think a lot of the problem is lax creativity with sound design. Now, new toys aren’t necessarily going to make a producer who’s, uh, a boring person suddenly turn interesting, any more than a fashion makeover will transform you into a better conversationalist. But put these tools in the hands of anyone passionate about sound, and I think they’ll have a great, great time – with some results to show for it.

Listening to the Analog Four, I hear something that does sound really distinctive and modern – very Elektron. (Very Swedish, even.)

Check out this new 1.30 sound pack for more:

And there is some connection between the culture of the machine and the culture of the music made with it. If we only talk about 909 sounds, for instance, we are going to get a lot of repetition – that’s nothing against tradition, but tradition can be too narrow.

But I’m confident that the pendulum is about to swing back. Whether you choose some weird plug-ins or a Reaktor or SuperCollider patch or a modular or something like the Analog Rytm or just abusing some hardware, I think it’s time we celebrate unusual noises in both production and listening.

Sorry, off my soapbox now. Let us know what noises you make with 1.30, Elektron owners – we’d love to hear them.

  • Nagasaki Nightrider

    I was really hoping that Elektron would do this. Before now, the sound design abilities of the Rytm have relied heavily on the sampler. The drum synths sound great, but they always felt very underdeveloped. Glad they finally unlocked what this thing can do from an analog standpoint. Now I can start to forgive the flaky paint job and dodgy display mine has had since the day I got it.

    • SevenEyeballs

      If you bought it when it came out you must have already felt quite happy when Overbridge And/or Strom came out, and now this..

      • Nagasaki Nightrider

        Overbridge is good for tracking, but so are the individual analog outs into my firewire mixer. I never use the plugin to edit the synth and I’m not really interested in Strom. The thing I like about hardware synths is that I’m not using a tablet or laptop. Anyway, finally got a chance to load the new OS. The new synth options are great.

  • SevenEyeballs

    I feel like they will certainly keep expanding Analog as well.

  • Hey just wanted to share this track I made exclusively on the Rytm utilizing a couple of the new machines and probability triggers, hope you enjoy

  • Ashley Scott

    where the hell is Hector?