In thinking about the free offerings detailed here this week, I have to cop to the rather embarrassing admission that I considered—if only for a microsecond—to use the phrase “get your groove on.” I’ll slap myself for that later, but please believe that I had only the best intentions, because the following boomy 808 kicks, glitch effects and DJ software can each make your musical life at least 1% funkier. And that’s all we can ask out of a day in the life.
Function Loops 808 Kick Drums
Kick, kix and more kicks—all from the legendary TR-808 drum machine. In the midst of putting out new reasonably priced packs this year like Future EDM 2017, Hard House and Psytrance for Reveal Sound Spire, Function Loops had the decency to drop this free download of 30 key-labelled 808 kick drum samples. Big and boomy, most of these samples have tails lasting 3 seconds. Many are smooth and round and others have a bit of distorted harshness on them or even some elements of noise. But why read more when this 27 MB pack is yours when you opt-in to Function Loops’ mailing list? These kicks are suitable for hard house, EDM, trance, hip-hop—pssh, what genre can’t use a little 808 love?
AudioBlast InstaLooper 1.2
This 4-effect, 4-looper plug-in makes it fun to add customized, moving glitches to live sets and improvised recordings. A simple interface makes it fast to get timed effect sequences up and running, and you can automate parameter movements in your DAW. InstaLooper 1.2 is available as a VST for Windows and Linux or as a VST/AU for Mac.
Mixxx 2.0 Open-Source DJ Software
Many electronic musicians already roll neck-deep in the DJ world, but for those who don’t, a free program like Mixxx 2.0 can let producers get their feet wet with a very high-level DJ software and explore whether they want to pursue this potentially revenue-generating avenue.
Mixxx 2.0 (pictured here and at the top of the page) runs on Windows, OS X and Linux, and it provides many of the same professional features and interface layout as a standard like Native Instruments Traktor. It’s compatible with MIDI controllers, as well as DVS CDJs and turntables. Some of the notable boons to Mixx 2.0 include: 4 decks with master sync, 4 effects modules with 5 effect types, configurable interface, key detection/key shifting, vinyl audio pass-through, 4 mic inputs/4 aux inputs, MIDI mapping GUI, RGB track waveforms and pitch shifting improved from previous version.