Music by VICE

Make Music in the Cloud Like Waka Flocka Flame

Splice is offering a cloud-based sampler and sequencer, and Flockavelli's on board.

by DJ Pangburn
15 March 2016, 4:55pm

Images courtesy the artists

If Silicon Valley has its way, everything will be in the cloud. Everything you do and create, housed on tech company servers. While some cloud computing platforms have utility (think Google Drive), others seem forced, manufacturing need where none really exists. After all, spoiler alert: the "cloud" is really just another computer, anyway. But there are a few cloud services that actually endeavor to do something cool. Splice, a cloud-based subscription music production platform with a social dimension for collaborating and remixing, is one of them. One of their latest features is Beat Maker, a sampler that allows you to upload and sequence 1,000,000 samples from their Splice Sounds library. Think of Beat Maker, along with Splice Sounds, as a sort of Fruity Loops for the cloud.

In fact, co-founded by Steve Martocci and Matt Aimonetti, Splice originated as a “Github for Ableton.” After Aimonetti began building the Splice Sounds library, the platform grew from a focus on project backup and collaboration to something like a fully-fledged digital audio workstation (DAW). Splice Sounds grew out of a desire to offer high-quality royalty-free audio files, while combating piracy in the process. Beat Maker, as Martocci tells The Creators Project, was the logical next step. And they’ve even got hip-hop artist Waka Flocka Flame on board for a collaboration that allows users to remix his a capella vocal for “Wakapella.”

“The Beat Maker was a next step that allows you to take those sounds and test them out together to ensure they work well before you download them,” Martocci says. “It also really opens the door of music production to so many more people and shows them how far you can get by starting with samples and loops.”

The Beat Maker sequencer drives the sampler, which is loaded with a collection of samples from the Splice Sounds library. There are currently almost 1,000,000 one-shots and loops in Splice Sounds now. Beat Maker boasts a 32-step sequencer and arpeggiator, and lets users trigger and tweak kick and snare drums, open and closed hi-hats, toms, and a shaker. Like any good piece of music software, it offers BPM control and sounds effects.

“Each track has a collection of curated sounds available to schedule via a step sequencer,” Martocci says. “The Beat Maker you see today only uses a subset, but we are close to releasing a version for subscribers that lets you use any sound from the library.”

The Splice Sounds catalog consists of samples, loops and synth presets made by professional sound designers. Martocci says they are looking to expand to more providers, but they want to ensure quality control and proper payout so sound designers of any size can monetise their work.

“You can find samples from some of the most respected producers from multiple genres, including Deadmau5, Carl Cox, Lex Luger, and KSHMR,” Martocci says. “[And] since it’s web-based, computers, tablets and phones can all run the Beat Maker.”

Martocci says that users can save their beats on their Splice account. What Beat Maker can’t currently do, however, is allow users to export their sampled music. But Martocci says any saved samples will be exportable once that feature is offered.

Click here to check out Beat Maker.


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