Recently, in need of a lighter and more chill atmosphere I decided to check out the new Glide Chill Electronic Loops release from ModeAudio. In this article I'd like to go over what I enjoyed and didn't about Glide and hopefully give you an idea whether this clean, little pack of loops, sounds, templates and samples are what you need to create some laid back listening of your own.
It's All in the Packing...
First off, I need to give ModeAudio a big hand. They really personalize all of their releases with extra bits that can not only save you some time but also teach you a few things about genres that you may or may not know anything about. As this is a new type of sound for me, I decided to actually jump in to one of the many templates that come in Glide.
I jumped into a clean, well laid out Ableton session with several loops already in play, and at the tempo that I wanted to begin with. Guitars, basses and big pads wash out, making me smile as I get the quick realization that all these guitars, basses and drums are available for me to use, now, on any song of my own. And that's an awesome thing, as the basses and guitars really do sound great. I wouldn't mind more key variation between the different styles or templates but the atmospheres contained within Glide do indeed inspire additional performance. So it's easily forgiven as my own melodies begin to form, and the arrangement takes off.
Did I mention that it's not just audio? 82 MIDI files, most of which are the original MIDI files for the drums and synth loops are also included. So you don't necessarily need to stick to the audio counterparts of some of the drum or synth loops if you'd rather try out some of the loops or riffs with soft synths or samples of your own.
Thankfully, it's not just loops. ModeAudio also included a healthy assortment of drum samples that would form the basis of or accentuate any existing personal library. Strangely there are no included kits to showcase how each sounds together, in context. But it's nothing 3 minutes with a Drum Rack won't cure.
In addition to drums there are also Tail Samples of instruments included in each template. I was really excited about this, as it I've had to use reverb, delay and other effects to mimic decays that were lost due to the loop being cut off at a certain point. This little bit of extra attention to detail really won me over. It gets irritating having to possibly color loops that I like with effects that muddy things up just to make things more transparent. Including the tail is very welcome, especially for this particular genre where real instruments are looped and you want to keep things authentic and crisp.
Beyond the sound, all loops and templates are carefully documented and relay important info like key and tempo, and there's a great file structure within the small library that I relied on a lot when getting to know the product. I couldn't find any instructions or a manual, strangely. And that is a little irritating as I'd love to know more about the story behind the creation and hear a little more about how the developer would recommend setting everything up. However the templates do a great job of painting the picture for you, where words would most likely be overlooked anyway.