Computer Music – INSTANT INSPIRATION – Issue 221, October 2015

FREE Multiband Distortion – 50 VST/AU plugins – 970 Analogue Circuits Samples

Get CM221 in the shops and in Digital now!

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Instant Inspiration!

Stuck in a rut? Can't get started? Can't even seem to finish a track? We're here to help! This month's Computer Music magazine is packed full of advice to help you unlock your creativity at all stages of the music-making process.

Over 15 pages and 40 videos, you'll discover…

  • 20 inspirational ways to start a new track
  • 10 workflow-accelerating tips to speed up your music-making
  • 10 easy music theory ideas for amazing melodies and chord sequences
  • 10 ways to bust those eight-bar loops and turn them into full arrangements
  • 10 must-try plugins that'll turbo-charge your creativity
  • 10-point checklist to put the finishing touches on any track

Get a tiny taste of this gigantic feature with the video below, and get loads more with issue 221 of Computer Music.

YouTube :


Pump your sounds full of grit, warmth and drive with a powerful VST/AU multiband saturation plugin – free only with Computer Music! CrossDr CM from Tek'It Audio splits the signal into three bands, with Drive, Warp, Crush and Clip controls to tailor your distortion flavour, and comprehensive levelling controls for the perfect balance.

Check out CrossDr CM in the below video, and get this VST/AU plugin only in issue 221 of Computer Music. Read more on out CrossDr CM page.

YouTube :

970 FREE SAMPLES – Analogue Circuits

Get the organic imperfections of real-world hardware in your DAW with this huge collection of samples! Inside, you'll find almost a thousand loops, hits and instruments drenched in the sounds of coveted hardware processors and oddball effects. From dictaphone beats to stompbox basslines, you'll get the warmth and realism of classic, characterful equipment in this massive pack.


Discover unconventional uses for your plugins in this unorthodox mixing and sound design showcase. Marvel at our real-time reverse-reverb simulation, our unusual approach to treble softening, grit-generating trickery, and other innovations. Free your mind, and your tunes will follow.

YouTube :


Xfer Records' super synth has won plaudits from the music industry and the public alike, coming out as the #1 entry in MusicRadar's Best Plugin Synth in the World poll.

Harness the full power of this immense synth over the course of our eight video tutorials. We'll get going with Serum's oscillators and filters, see how to edit its wavetables, and explore its limitless effects and modulation routing options. It's about time you gave Serum a try – check out what it can do in the video below.

YouTube :


Fresh from the release of his new album, DLR – aka James Rowbotham –returns to the studio to give CM readers a first-hand look at how he goes about making music. This 90-minute video sees James rebuild his album track The Grip in Logic Pro 9, piece by piece, showing us how he arrived at his final arrangement and mix.

YouTube :


  • Designer Sounds: Paul "InsideInfo" Bondy shows you his recipe for delay-soaked filter zaps using nothing but effects plugins
  • Dr Beat: Perfect your ride cymbal programming with this expert tutorial focussed on realistic virtual drums
  • Geek Technique: Are your sounds too abrasive? It could be a transient thing –set Owen Palmer's special sound-smoothing formula to work on your own tracks
  • Music Theory: We get right to the bottom of music this month, tackling the subject at its root with a look at the circle of fifths.


  • Gregor Salto:Holland's jazz-house master discusses what it's like to remix for musical royalty, and dishes out some top technical advice for producers and DJs alike
  • SKnote: Quinto Sardo is at the helm of one of the most interesting and prolific independent software and hardware development houses around – read what he has to say about making great music software
  • David Zowie: Sure, he does House Every Weekend, but we've found out the five pieces of software he can't get through the rest of the week without.


  • PreSonus Studio One 3
  • u-he Hive
  • Aegean Music Spirit Reverb
  • Wave Arts Tube Saturator 2
  • Livid Instruments Base II
  • Audio Assault XCTR
  • Applied Acoustics Systems Strum GS-2

Win big with this issue of CM!

This month, we also give you the chance to strike the mother lode. Enter our mammoth competition for a chance to get your hands on top gear from the likes of Moog, Arturia, Universal Audio, Genelec and loads more – that's an astounding £14,000's worth of music-making kit. The winner takes all, and you'll find out how to enter in this issue of Computer Music. Here's what's up for grabs…

  • Universal Audio Apollo Twin interface
  • Moog Sub 37 Paraphonic synthesiser
  • Arturia BeatStep Pro hardware sequencer
  • Studio One 3 Professional
  • Genelec 8330 Smart Active Monitors
  • PLUS two Fender guitars, a whole drum kit, three amplifiers and loads more
  • Check out the full list of prizeson the competition page.

(Competition open to entrants fromUK & Irelandonly)

Get this issue now on:

Apple Newsstand (iPhone/iPad/iPod touch)
Google Play (Android/Chrome for PC/Mac)
Zinio (PC/Mac/Android/iOS)
In Print (Worldwide delivery)
IncludesVault downloadfor all formats.

Subscribe and save!

Never miss an issue with a CM subscription, print or digital!

cm221 is on sale now in the UK, Apple Newsstand and Zinio. Overseas dates for print edition are roughly: USA + 4 weeks after UK / Australia +8 weeks / Europe +2 weeks / South Africa +6 weeks / Canada +4 weeks

See more back issues in the cmbackissueslist

Two Focusrite plugins, worth £229…
…for absolutely FREE with Computer Music 236