Here is a simplified overview of a 128bpm electro/complextro style set I have spent a long time developing (but it can easily be adapted for most genres of dance music). This particular version uses all samples and no VSTs (keeping my CPU usuge down to around 20%). I'm using an Akai APC40 mk 1.
(Live 9, session view)
*Track 1. Kick drum (changes key and/or pattern randomly every 8 bars)
*Track 2. Snare (changes randomly every 8 bars)
*Track 3. Bass/melody loops (1 bar long, cut up using follow actions, and arranged into a new 1 bar loop by routing to a looping effect on a dummy clip. Changes randomly every 8 bars, or whenever)
*Track 4. Hi-hat loops (1 to 2 bar loops, cut up and arranged into a new 1 bar loop. Changes randomly every 4 bars)
*Track 5. Vocals & random samples (1 to 4 bar loops, brought in manually with the crossfader whenever)
*Track 6. Risers/sweeps (4 to 8 bars long, changing randomly every 16 bars)
*Track 7. Drum fills (1 or 2 bars long, a random one comes in at the end of each 8-bar loop, unless over-ridden by me with the crossfader)
*Track 8. Crash cymbals & stabs (coming in on the 1st beat, changing randomly every 8 bars)
Master channel- various FX, beat repeat, auto filter, eq etc.
I use Ableton's Corpus effect on track 3 (via a send/return track) to add a sub-bass layer.
As I said, this is a basic overview and stuff like loop lengths are changed on the fly as and when necessary...
I hope this makes sense, although designed primarily for live performance it also makes an excellent template for writing tracks. So if anyone wants a copy
of the .als file please comment or PM and I'll sort something out (just add your own samples and you're ready to go!) You will need a knowledge of follow
actions, dummy clips and Ableton's routing system but it's all in the manual...