It’s a well-worn saying but still worth repeating; variety is the spice of life. As it applies to music, numerous studies have shown that what pleases the ear most is variety balanced with uniformity. In other words, as listeners we tend to gravitate towards music that offers up just enough surprises, but not too many, and within a familiar structure.
One person who’s put a lot of thought into achieving this balance with electronic music-making tools is Tom Cosm. Beyond being an Ableton Certified Trainer, Cosm is the maker of numerous devices and techniques for injecting variety, variations, and surprises into the composition process. And now, in Tom’s episode of our One Thing video series, he demonstrates a simple and very effective method for combining variations of a loop (in this case, a bass line) into a new version that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.