Having access to great sounds makes the whole music making the process so much faster. That is why I am always on a hunt for good Live Packs. I’ve collected my top favorite free Live Packs and Instrument Racks. Download each of these for free. If it opens up a Gumroad page, just put “0” in the name your price to grab it for free.
Singularities for that synthy goodness
First on our list is an official Live Pack from Ableton, Singularities. This Live pack is freaking amazing. As they say on the website;
Singularities makes use of single samples and finely tuned, expressive parameters to capture the sound and feel of classic synths and samplers. Included are 40 Instrument Racks, plus MIDI clips and drum kits – all the parts you need for a complete track.
I love the collection of synths and instrument racks in this Live Pack. Check out the sounds of Singularities below.
Smashed Snapple Can Just For Fun
If you have read this blog, you know I am a fan of AfroDjMac. He is constantly coming out with Live Packs and Instrument Racks. I didn’t want to litter the list with all his releases, but this is one of his highlights.
The Smashed Snapple Can Live Rack is just that… A smashed can. AfroDjMac showed this instrument off at Loop this year. Here is what he said about the instrument rack:
I created these while monitoring the In-School Suspension room at the high school where I work. A bored and belligerent student was amusing himself by causing a disruption. He was blowing into a crushed Snapple to make some kind of dying animal sound. Here is the sample:
Unaware of who was supervising the room, the student was a bit surprised when I asked him to do it again so I could record it. After recording it, I processed the sound in Ableton Live and made the three instruments I am sharing with you today.
I love the context this gives to the samples. Freaking hilarious. Download the Live Pack Here.
LATE 80’s DIGITAL – Retro Synth
I couldn’t help myself, let’s stick with AfroDjMac for one more. This Instrument Rack was made with the Roland D-05. He recorded this, processed, and built a really amazing Instrument Rack. Easy to manipulate and add to your tracks.
Download the Late 80’s Digital Instrument Rack from AfroDjMac’s website. While you are at it, look through his extensive collection. There were a lot more goodies in there I wanted to post in this list but didn’t want to look too much like a fanboy.
Three Planters – Because Plant’s are Cool
Here is another quirky one. I found this instrument rack in some back alley forum on the dark web. Zombie Fights Shark has been releasing a few really cool instrument racks and sample libraries. My favorite is the Three Planters He literally took 3 planters from his yard and turned their samples into an instrument rack. On top of that, it sounds good. Take a listen to this example:
Download the Three Platers Ableton Live Pack. It’s an incredibly creative sound.
SOUND DESIGN TOOLS // Kalimba
Next up we have a Kalimba by Sound Design Tools. The Kalimba is a pretty simple instrument. The tones of the instrument are so clear that they can cut through the mix in a really interesting way. I love this Live Pack because Sound Design Tools took there Instrument Rack one step further by adding a bunch of cool effects. It’s really easy to manipulate the instrument and come up with some unexpected sounds. Check out the Kalimba Instrument Rack.
Lo-Fi Synth for that VCR Goodness
I just can’t help myself and share at least 2 of my own favorite Instrument Racks I created this year. Vintage retro sounds from the 80’s have been my jam. There is just something really evocative about the sound. That’s why things got a little strange this summer when I went down the rabbit hole and ended up buying a bunch of VCR’s. Yes… VCR’s. I was taking synth sounds and running them through the tape and messing with the tap head to get unique sounds.
Of course, what do I do next… Record them and turn them into instrument racks for the masses. This is how the Lo-Fi Synth Instrument Rack was born.
Bongo Percussion Samples and Drum Racks
Another of my own favorites is the Bongo Percussion Drum Racks. I made this by recording a Bongo Drum and chopped them up in Ableton Live and made easy to use Drum Racks. I worked hard to add lots of expression with samples for different velocities and regions of the drum. This gives it as realistic of a sound as I could.
Pre-Columbian America Instruments
Everything on this list was released in 2018, except this one. I made a rule for this article to only share Instrument Racks released in 2018… well… I am going to break that rule. Besides, I found this instrument rack in 2018 so it counts.
Charly Fariseo, a producer and Ableton Live trainer, recorded instruments from The Metaphor of Sound, a recent exhibition at the Museo del Oro in Costa Rica. He made this live set a collection of the ancient instrument from a time before colonialization of the Americas. I love the richness of sounds and you can feel the history in these instruments.
Download The Metaphor of Sounds by Charly Fariseo to play with these amazing instruments.
Want the biggest collection of Live Packs and Live Instruments in one click?
The Subaqueous Archive is a collection of all my free / by donation live packs in one massive collection. It’s orginized and easy to add to your Live User Library. Inludes thick drum racks, deep 808’s, rare world instruments, and more.