For this instalment of extraordinary REAKTOR instruments, we explore the darker outskirts of electronic music, selecting our favorite user-made ensembles for dark techno and other rhythm-based sound excursions. Ranging from classic synth emulations to emotive pads, and unconventional percussive noise generators.

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The mean machine

Screaming lead sounds and beefy bass-tones, a vintage classic in a more than accurately re-built digital robe. The MS-20 is a patchable semi-modular mono synth known for its warm and powerful filters and beefy sounding two-oscillator engine, which this clone captures fantastically.

Check out Paule’s MS-20 clone here.

best-dark-techno-ensembles-from-the-reaktor-user-library-kantubek

Dark and desolate

Created by REAKTOR User Library power-contributor OreKore, Kantubek was initially intended to be a “simple pad tool”, but ended up being a whole lot more. The ensemble is perfectly suited for dark, spatial, and moody pad sounds. Add some spacious and cinematic soundscapes to your pounding drum track and explore the darker territories of techno.

Check out Kantubek here.

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Hard styles

Intentionally a kickdrum generator for psytrance, progressive trance, and minimal techno, PitchKick turns into a full blown gabber machine when using the additional b-panel’s audio shaper adding extra punch and heavy saturation. As it’s quite a “basic tool” it is recommended to sample the generated kick and re-use it in a sampler in order to gain more control over the kickdrum’s sound.

Download Joeri Van Hove’s PitchKick here.

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Nice noise

A simple, yet effective tool for percussive FM-noise sounds. NoiseNoise is a white noise generator paired with a sample-rate reducer, a resonant bp filter, and an additional FX section. Combining sequenced noise creations with the synced gates is big fun and adds some extra percussive weirdness to your track.

Download Flo Gudat’s NoiseNoise here.

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We call it techno

A Blocks-based, four-track patch consisting of a kick-,hi-hat-, and synth-sequence plus additional gated noise for extra rhythms. With Berlin-style techno at its heart, techno ensemble offers loads of tweakbility for hours of modulation fun, and thanks to the Euclidean step-sequencer you can even drift off into some polyrhythmic and abstract realms.

Get creative with techno ensemble here.

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The classic

Following up on a forum request, Christian Schneider, the creator of this ensemble, patched up this Blocks-based 303 clone that you can also implement into your MASCHINE workflow. Three-No-Three includes a delay and an additional LFO for extra tweakability. “Not really a 303, but good fun”.

Check out Three-No-Three here.