Introducing RANDS: A Versatile Eurorack Module for Random Sampling and Sequencing

Thoroughly capturing the spirit of the Mutable Instruments Marbles, TLM Audio presents RANDS, a versatile 1:1 clone eurorack module. Built to the highest quality standards, the Germany-produced RANDS comes installed with the latest firmware, ready for integration into your next sound venture.

As a random gate generator, RANDS operates as the master clock, hosting an internal clock with an adjustable rate that is CV controllable, allowing for the division or multiplication of an external clock. If you fancy further flexibility, range selection buttons provide the option for multiplying or dividing the clock by four.

The module features a rhythm follower/predictor, an excellent tool when attempting to latch onto unique clock divisions or rhythmic patterns. Alongside this, the adjustable jitter obtains a balance between perfect rhythmic tracking and enticingly erroneous beats, while carefully preserving the overall tempo.

RANDS comes equipped as a two-channel random rhythm generator. With three generative models, the random routing function behaves like a musical coin toss, sending clock pulses to either output for varied rhythmic exploration. Additional gate outputs carry the jittery clock and complementary random rhythm output, which can be adjusted for duration, providing everything from short triggers to full-length gates— a phenomenal tool for extensive rhythmic exploration.

Ever dabbled with random voltage generation? RANDS makes it possible with three outputs independently clocked by the random gate generator or a common external clock. A handy distribution control, complete with SPREAD and BIAS adjustments, allows for precision voltage distribution, and an adjustable range from 0 to +2V, 0 to +5V, or -5V to +5V.

RANDS goes a step further with the addition of a built-in CV Post-processor, allowing the unit to produce steppy, quantized output voltages, or smooth curves, all controlled by the STEPS parameter. If you yearn for a melodic direction, a progressive quantizer reduces the probability of hitting notes outside of the scale, making accidentals less likely, and giving more weight to the root and fifth. For those that prefer a fluid approach, the output voltages can effortlessly slew, producing constant smooth, flowing curves.

Our journey with RANDS expands further into a half-dozen programmable scales, which can be swiftly set by jamming in your target scale. It’s an intuitive approach to sequence scaling, with RANDS learning which notes take prominence over others.

RANDS also offers random looping and shuffling, with a DEJA VU parameter for re-playing past material for loop formation. This feature additionally randomizes the order of this loop, creating delightfully unpredictable rhythmic affair. The DEJA VU control influences the rhythm and voltages, or either or neither of them. An adjustable loop length from 1 to 16 steps makes it suitable for a wide array of musical styles.

For those who'd like to incorporate external sources, RANDS enables an external CV to be recorded in the DEJA VU loop in place of internal random voltages. All transformations performed by the random voltage generator (ranging from looping, shuffling, spreading, transposition, quantization, to lag-processing) can be achieved using external voltages.

RANDS is more than a mutable clone; it is your partner in creating – whether it be generating random voltage, controlling rhythmic tempo, or live-remixing of external sequences. This module is an analog sensation, fit for both the novice modular experimenter, and the seasoned audio architect looking to inject a healthy dose of inspired randomness into their creations.

Example Usage

Let's dive into a novice-level example of how you can use the RANDS module in your eurorack setup:

Imagine you have a simple drum sequence running on your eurorack system, and you want to add some random variation to make it more interesting. You decide to use the RANDS module to generate randomized gate patterns for your drum sounds.

First, you connect the clock output of your main clock module to the clock input of the RANDS module. This will ensure that the randomized gate patterns generated by RANDS stay in sync with the rest of your sequence.

Next, you take the main gate output of the RANDS module (labeled as "t2") and patch it to the gate input of your drum module. This will trigger your drum module based on the randomized gate patterns generated by RANDS.

To spice things up further, you decide to create rhythmic variations using the RANDS module's generative models. You patch the complementary random rhythm outputs, "t1" and "t3," to the gate inputs of other drum modules in your setup. These outputs will generate additional, complementary randomized gate patterns, adding layers of variation to your rhythm section.

Now, with everything patched up, you start tweaking the parameters on the RANDS module. You adjust the range selection to multiply the clock by 4, creating faster gate patterns. Additionally, you experiment with the jitter control, gradually introducing some randomness and unpredictability to the gate timings.

As you play your sequence, you'll notice that the RANDS module generates ever-changing gate patterns for your drum sounds. The randomized variations breathe new life into your sequenced drums, making your composition more dynamic and exciting.

This novice-level example showcases just one aspect of the RANDS module's capabilities. With further exploration and experimentation, you can unlock its full potential for random sampling and sequencing in your eurorack system.

Intermediate-level Usage Example: Creating Dynamic Rhythm Patterns

One of the exciting features of the RANDS Eurorack module is its ability to generate random rhythm patterns. Let's explore how you can use this function to create dynamic and evolving rhythms for your compositions.

Start by patching the "t2" gate output to a drum module or any other sound source you prefer. This will be our main output carrying the jittery clock. Adjust the clock rate using the internal clock knob or an external clock source, and experiment with the range selection button to multiply or divide the clock speed.

Next, patch the "t1" and "t3" gate outputs to other sound sources or modulation destinations. These outputs generate complementary random rhythm patterns that can add complexity and variation to your composition.

Now, let's dive into the generative models available on RANDS. The first model allows for the random routing of each clock pulse between the "t1" and "t3" outputs, following a coin toss. This creates an ever-changing, unpredictable rhythmic interplay between the two channels.

The second model enables the selection of a random division factor for one output and the reciprocal factor for the other. This creates interesting rhythmic subdivisions that can introduce polyrhythmic elements into your composition.

Lastly, the third generative model generates random kick/snare patterns, similar to the popular Grids module. Adjust the gate duration to control the length of the percussion sounds, and don't forget that the gate duration can also be randomized for added unpredictability.

Feel free to experiment further by modulating the bias parameter of each generative model. Increasing the bias parameter will result in a higher density of notes on one channel, while decreasing it will shift the focus to the other channel. This can create captivating rhythmic patterns that evolve over time.

Remember, RANDS provides ample control over the random aspect of these rhythm patterns. Adjust the jitter knob and apply CV to add or reduce randomness, while still preserving the overall tempo. This allows you to strike the perfect balance between stability and chaos in your composition.

With RANDS, you have a versatile random rhythm generator at your fingertips. Push the boundaries of your music by creating dynamic and evolving rhythm patterns that add intrigue and excitement to your soundscapes.

Further Thoughts

One creative way to use the RANDS module in your eurorack setup is to create evolving and unpredictable drum patterns. By utilizing its random gate generator and three generative models, you can generate unique kick and snare patterns with adjustable gate durations. Combine this with the rhythm follower/predictor feature to lock onto uneven clock divisions or rhythmic patterns, and you'll have an ever-changing drum sequence that adds excitement and depth to your music. Experiment with different bias parameters to increase or decrease the density of notes on specific channels, allowing for complex and diverse drum patterns to emerge. The RANDS module truly shines in its ability to generate unexpected rhythmic variations, making it a valuable addition to any eurorack system.