Mutable Instruments Clouds
Make it Rain
In the world of modular synthesis there are certain names that command veneration and respect; Moog, Buchla, Doepfer, Serge; but there are others that inspire the kind of fizzing delight and excitement that simply won’t leave you alone until you’ve filled your bedroom and half the hallway too.
Mutable Instruments have been making Eurorack modules in that latter category for almost a decade, and now Clouds — the texturizing module which sold like crazy in hardware and became a firm favourite of enthusiasts around the world — is available for Modular.
Clouds allows the user to divide incoming signals into audio droplets between 16ms and 1 second long; like using a tap to create a controlled drip from the audio stream; and manipulate those droplets in so many different ways you could easily pass a rainy weekend or two examining the capabilities of this module alone.
Scrub through the audio buffer. Change the sample size and texture. Create choppy rhythmic mayhem out of the smoothest input. Alternatively, mutate a snare drum into an ambient drone or soundscape by stacking droplets more and more densely until a reverb-like storm-system builds. Shift pitch, stretch time, feed back, until the tone you want shines through.
A digital module, Clouds hides hidden depths behind its every control, and learning its limits and possibilities is an adventure in itself. It’s great for mangling incoming drum loops into trippy, jerking breakouts. It can be used as a kind of one-shot sampler by freezing the buffer, allowing you to play with the same chunk of audio indefinitely. It can robotize an input signal, by using an external oscillator to quickly freeze and un-freeze the audio stream. It can be used like a wavetable by populating the buffer with multiple different tones. It can even simply add some grit and texture to a signal by generating a granular, irregular delay tail and blending it in parallel with the audio stream passing through. A kind of organic sonic friction.
If Modular synthesis is all about creating the broadest, deepest, densest, and most diverse palettes possible for sound design, then no system is complete without Clouds. Add it to your setup today, and make it rain.
A granular texturizer, which processes an audio stream into manipulable droplets.
Control speed, size, texture and more of the flow of droplets.
Can be used simply as a reverb, or a delay.
Freeze function allows use as a simple one-shot sampler.
Four audio quality modes, including appealing lo-fi 8-bit options.
Stereo spread can send droplets firing left and right.
An awesome module to experiment with – find a use no one else has.
Requires Softube Modular