BroStep Synth! [Free Ableton Live Rack #29]

Any decent movement in music comes with its own inevitable backlash.  The Beatles came to us at the cost of The Monkees.  Nirvana became disenchanted when the people they were originally rebelling against started showing up at their shows yelling “Teen Spirit.”   And now the DubStep community cries foul about an emerging sub-genre affectionately known as BroStep.  Although I’ve learned a lot from some of its production techniques, DubStep has never really dominated my own personal playlists.  So, I did a quick online search for BroStep and found tons of amusing articles and posts, packed with a lot of passionate disdain.  Check out this Urban Dictionary entry on BroStep.  James Blake had a go at it on Pitchfork.  Forums are jumping on the topic.

So, basically for my own amusement, I started putting together a synth to emulate some of the characteristic vowel formant and noisy controversy causing bass sounds.  I ended up with something I actually like a lot.  This weeks Free Weekly Ableton Live Rack is the AfroDJMac BroStep Rack!  It wound up getting pretty complicated.   It’s made using the Operator synth.  I got the vowel sounds from racking up the vowel presets in Ableton’s EQ Eight.  (Check this Ableton Forum Post for my inspiration) This vowel Rack is also included  and useful in other situations.  I believe that every sound has its time and place, so I’m confident this Ableton Live instrument rack will be useful at some point or another.  And, if using it as a bass type sound goes against your own musical values, this rack can be tweaked around into something entirely different.  Don’t hate it for its name, bro:)





—-If you have interesting samples you’d like me to work with, let me know and we can help spread the word about each other :)  And, as always, if you create any music using any of the AfroDJMac racks, send it to my Soundcloud and I will post it! —-



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  • m.a.

    Yo man where is the dl link for the rack?

    • AfroDJMac

      It’s in the middle below the video, it’s via facebook… Is it not showing up in your browser?

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  • Marc

    Link not working, had lots of trouble w/Topspin, not connecting via any external app for security concerns. Please remove Facebook requirement. Not everyone uses Facebook and I don’t use FB Connect due to huge security holes. Single platform dependency not appreciated.


  • AI_Joe

    Yeah, the FB requirement hangs – even though I have already “liked” you on FB. Tried un-liked-ing you and re-liked-ing you, but it’s like, not working.

    • AI_Joe

      Oh, I have to use Topspin? I don’t know what that is and I’m definitely not letting it into my FB info. Look, I’m following you all over social network’s creations, signed up for your mailing list, must there be additional hoops to jump through?

      • AfroDJMac

        Hey guys, I’ve posted a straight up link. Definitely not trying to create hoops and my apologies for any inconvenience. I appreciate your support tremendously! I’m trying to find a nice happy home for my music, racks, etc. rather than having to constantly update 11 different sites. I’m hoping TopSpin is it. So far I like it a lot, but there are still kinks and a learning curve that I am navigating through. Thanks for you patience and I hope you guys have fun with the BroStep Rack!
        <3 AfroDJMac

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  • Ricky Wilson

    How do I get it into my Ableton Live 8 samples?

    • AfroDJMac

      If you click the save icon on the rack itself, Live will save the instrument to your library, under “instrument racks.” enjoy!

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  • joe

    Ableton gives me a warning “This device is not available in this version of Live. The product operator is required to go beyond this limitation” I have fully licensed Ableton Live 8.4.2. All latest drivers and updates on my machine as well. Won’t let me utilize this download.

    • AfroDJMac

      Do you own the Operator synth? This particular download was made using Ableton’s Operator FM synthesizer.