Generative

Generative music apps for looping and patterns

Arpeggionome Pro – Review

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Arpeggionome Pro By: Alexandernaut

UPDATED: 6-23-2013

Arpeggionome Pro was already getting a fine work out on my iPad controlling other MIDI capable synths and the likes. Now Audiobus support has been added to further expand the apps functionality. Audiobus wasn’t really a necessity since the apps Arpeggionome Pro controls sends the recorded audio through Audiobus to whatever output is being used. It does however make things much easier to do. Triggering the record function while in AP definitely speeds up the process and eliminates extra home button clicks.
Personally I really appreciate the landscape view support being added. Choice is good.
Don’t underestimate this app. This is a strong piece of software and is worth the cost.

Original Review:

I’ve been looking around for a robust, dedicated Arpeggiator app to add to my iPad music studio. Since I don’t use any midi hardware and have found most virtual midi capable apps less than exciting, they often don’t escape my self induced blind spot. There are some very good ones, and then there are those like Arpeggionome Pro that blow me away. This is one cool program! I am kicking myself for having missed it until now.

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Arpeggionome Pro is first and foremost a midi controller. It is a very complex Arpeggiator with a full plate of programming capabilities. It has its own built in synthesizer, but very basic. Using this to control any (virtual) midi capable synth is where it at. Thanks to a thoughtful design that inspires easy use, making midi connections is a breeze.
Deigned to control pretty much anything midi, Arpeggionome Pro beckons users to put it to work with what ever you want it to control. Quantize first note, use any of the 16 channel sends, midi clock sync, so on and so on. If its midi, Arpeggionome Pro can do it.
Making virtual midi connections are effortless and more up my alley for my uses. In no time I was enjoying this marvelous app controlling my favorite synths and crafting some slick arps.

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The range of arpeggio pattern controls are splendid. Center screen is the performance matrix for primary pattern control by touch to manipulate first triggered note (left & right) and pattern speed (up & down). 6 groups of button matrices and 8 virtual knobs frame the performance matrix. Make pattern adjustments in any size, shape or speed on the fly. Theres no need to stop the flow just to change where it goes, the octaves, gate, speeds etc.
Having all the controls right there in your face makes this one very tidy experience. At the top of the screen is also a visual indication of the notes as they are played out on a virtual keyboard.

See screen shot below for details on the button matrices and knob controls.
For even more details please visit Alexandernaut here! There is a lot going on under the hood.

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As you can see (from the screen shots) the available controls are not just numerous, but also just a quick tap or slide away. No changing screens, or menus to dig through. One screen with everything. This is designed with consideration to those performing live and with the adjustable accelerometer assigned messages, (like, pitchbend, gate, etc) Arpeggionome Pro becomes a whole new instrument full of expressive possibilities.
With the combination of all the available options to make up your own unique arpeggios you’ll soon discover this is all you’ll want for your pattern programming needs. Nothing opens up a greater, more pleasant experience for creating any arps you can imagine. Plus a nice selection of preset patterns to use or build off are included as well.
Anything you create can be saved for future use and is quickly accessible via the pattern banks on the bottom of the same screen.

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Arpeggionome Pro has no record, audio copy, or Audiobus support. Audiobus support is planned. Even without it Arpeggionome Pro can control a synth assigned to an Audiobus input which can then be captured by whatever output you are using. It works fine as is, but starting a recording in an output slot app from the very handy Audiobus remote control would be a nice addition here.

If you want something to create specialized and unique arpeggios beyond the usual fare get Arpeggionome Pro and start making some serious arps. This is powerful, fun, and creative. All packed into an intuitive interface that works with you. This is a masterpiece in design and functionality.

Smashing! 5 stars Click here to buy Arpeggionome Pro in iTunes.

*There is also a lighter version called simply “Arpeggionome” with fewer features at a smaller price.

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Bip- Review

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Bip- A Mini Review
Bip is made By: Stephen O’Hara, sohla

Once in a while a iOS music app comes along that strikes me as something I really wish was available when I was first trying out making music with iOS. Bip is one of those. It is currently not iPad native, but works just fine on mine.

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Bip is a rhythmic pattern music maker loaded up with hundreds of samples that can be tweaked and arranged manually. You can also import your own samples through AudioPaste or iTunes file share. The interface is colorful, simple and has a unique look that is all easy to navigate by touch & gestures. The smooth U.I. makes for swift control during a performance or recording.
There is a good amount of adjustable parameters to fine tune your music. Beginners should feel very comfortable and find making great music a delight. This is a perfect addition to iPhone or iPod musicians looking for something easy to use, sounds very good, and inspires creativity.

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Bip is an amusement park of sound and possibilities with piles of potential. A widely appealing, accessible, and fun pattern based music making app. It is sure to engage new and experienced users alike.

If you want something to make rhythmic patterns quickly and easily on your iPhone or iPod touch, Bip is certainly worth the purchase. Packed with a detailed instruction manual to help you along the path to frustration-free music crafting. A satisfying choice for anyone starting their iOS music adventure who wants great sound options in a small & friendly package.

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Buy Bip In iTunes

Gestrument – Review

Created by: Jesper Nordin and Jonatan Liljedahl

Created by: Jesper Nordin and Jonatan Liljedahl

Gesture and Instrument met one crazy night on a blind date set up by their friends. It was love at first touch. They had a child and named it Gestrument.
Gestrument grew with the best attributes of its parents into the perfect combination.

Alright, enough of that. You get the picture. Gestrument is a new MIDI controller and instrument created by Jesper Nordin and Jonatan Liljedahl.
Designed for ease of use to comfortably perform a multitude of musical styles, Gestrument delights the senses.

Controlling other iOS music apps via virtual MIDI is, as it should be, a simple process. Simply put, you just load another synth, enable its background audio and MIDI out, wallah, you’re in business. Gestrument just knows what to do. You can expect that further MIDI development is underway.

Gestrument is shipped with its own synth and dozens of great preset sounds, assignable to 8 instrument banks. These can be played simultaneously or in any combination along with whatever is being controlled in the background. Tap the instruments 1-8 on or off on the fly. Some pretty interesting combinations are at the ready awaiting discovery.

Each instrument can have its own settings, such as pitch, note length, range etc. A nice reverb with 3 quality settings can be applied to the overall mix. It would be nice if each instrument could have its own FX setting, but for now its global. All On or all off.

Playing Gestrument is intuitive and uncomplicated. Your iPad screen is the whole playing surface. It’s a nice use of screen space without waste. One finger controls the instruments, the other controls selectable parameters (Like pulse, pitch, scale morphing, and rhythm) by dragging away and angling from the first. It’s a snap. Depending on where you touch the screen and how you combine the second touch will impact the sounds the instrument makes. It’s a very clean and expressive way to create music. It’s easy for anyone to start making great music right away. Gestrument also has just the right amount of options for the experienced musicians who desire a greater amount of control.
Although a little light on programmable options now, further development will surely add more complex options as Gestrument grows. The developers are open to user feedback. So if you want something, just ask them. You may get it.

Gestrument Features
Visit HERE for more on Gestrument from its creators.

It would be really nice to see some more gesture, or multi-touch controls. As is, the multi-touch is limited to 2 fingers. It’s all in how you combine the movements. It may sound like that’s not much, but a lot can be done with some creative use in how you play it.

Recording and playback looping are available. AudioCopy and direct link to AudioShare are also included. Gestruments recorder however doesn’t seem to record MIDI controlled sounds. You’ll have to use the record function from the other app for that.

I have found Gestrument to be a very pleasant app. It’s a synch to use, and sounds great. This is a quality instrument and is highly stable. It’s not crashed on me once even while playing all 8 instruments and controlling the two synths from Magellan.
This is the chocolate and peanut butter of gesture and instrument. Yum.

4 stars Recommended. Buy Gestrument HERE at iTunes.

BitWiz Audio Synth Review

Created by Jonatan Lijedahl

Chomping At The Bit

Review Based On Use With iPads 1,2,3.

I’ll be honest, I don’t know the first thing about programming with C-like code
expressions. So my initial impressions of BitWiz were puzzling. Put some
oscillators, filters, envelopes etc in front of me and I’m comfy, but C codes?
Bitwise, Arithmetic, algorithms, operations….. say what now? Where’s theNo clutter
keyboard?

Well maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but I really am not proficient in
programming codes. BitWiz, thankfully, makes it so I don’t have to be. After
reading the in app instructions, it’s really not so difficult. In fact, it is
simple to learn. After a little time exploring the included library of presets,
and messing with the codes, I was finding myself engrossed in a 8-bit synth,
world of generative musical wonders.

All the details

Click HERE to visit developer Jonatan Liljedahl’s website

With such an open world of code possibilities, a randomize feature, and creative
code tweaking I was making cool 8-bit stereo sounds. Feeling very retro, I was
playing it like an instrument with its spacious X/Y pad, and day dreaming of my
first NES console. Not so hard at all. Learning how to make evolving generative
sounds that seem to take on a life of their own is a real blast. It was like I
was in some 8-bit dimension where ghosts of Nintendos past took over
orchestrating a new epic cave adventure sound track.

Custom keyboard to make coding easy!

BitWiz is MIDI
supported, so if you’re thinking about piping in your programmed masterpieces to
your MIDI keyboard, you can.
You could also just record your sounds in app,
and audio copy to paste in other compatible apps. Or, open in other apps like
AudioShare to keep it safely cataloged for a project. Recordings and codes can
be uploaded to SoundCloud, emailed, or even Tweeted.

It seems to me that BitWiz was designed with ease of use in mind. Maybe
considering that a very streamlined interface would help ease some users
trepidation of all the C code involved? Well, it works and had that relaxing
effect on me. It has a consistent retro look all around and displays the
waveform responding and moving to touch input on the X/Y pad. All things
considered, my initial discomfort is but a memory leaving me to feel good about
recommending BitWiz. Check it out.

Click HERE to be directed to iTunes to purchase BitWiz Audio Synth

Scroll this screen to see the instructions and easy programmingMove them files

SpaceWiz App Review

Wiz Around The Aural Expanse Of Space

SpaceWiz is made By Wizdom Music
Review is based on experience with iPad 2,3 & 4

UPDATED REVIEW: 8-1-2013

SpaceWiz will not be receiving Audiobus support. The reason being that SpaceWiz is built on the Unity graphics engine, which somehow prohibits it from functioning with Audiobus. That’s sad news for many. One can still hope for iOS 7 and its anticipated “inter-app audio” connectivity might resolve this? Who knows? JACK could still be on the table as well.
For now SpaceWiz users will have to get along with AudioCopy.
There are some new sounds to play with, and improved stability in the recent update.
It’s a bummer that we won’t be using this with Audiobus, but SpaceWiz is still a pretty cool generative music app.

Ever wondered what it would be like to manipulate celestial bodies to create interesting sound and melody? Yeah…me either, but thankfully Jordan Rudess did. With the combined imagination and talents of the Wizdom Music team, Jordan Rudess, Kevin Chartier, and Tobias Miller, comes SpaceWiz!
An audio visual marvel that allows you to control 8 planets, each with a variety of assignable timbres to play with or off each other. 250 instruments, 45presets, and access to control other MIDI instruments. There’s a lot of possibilities. All controlled by intuitive touch.
 Visit Wizdom Music for all the detailed specifications, click HERE
You can sit back and watch the galactic show, relax, chill out to the orchestra of a randomly generated scene admiring the musical and visual experience. The real fun is interacting with planets and particles, tossing around asteroids, manipulate the individual gravitation of each planet like a tripped out space god experimenting with an infinite universe of sonic realms. You have control. Alter the mass, volume, width, and more independently. Control pitch depending on the x/y axis delivering different results with the angle of particle impacts. Each planet can be set or randomized independently. You can also control mute or solo with each of the planets. Anyway, its all really quite a blast.
SpaceWiz also features a 2 oscillator SW 3000 SpaceWiz synth built from scratch. You can play along using the synths virtual spacey keyboard. Craft new patches. Volume, envelope filters, both with ADSR, filter cutoff and resonance are all controllable by virtual knobs. It’s a good synth, pretty basic but it does sound very nice and has dedicated FX. The synth is a big part of SpaceWiz of course and it will see further development. This is just the beginning.
The FX included are Chorus, Delay, and Reverb.
There is also a fully controllable modulation matrix allowing a planet to control most of the parameters. Additionally SpaceWiz has deep preset and customizable tonality control of modes, scales and chords.
 SpaceWiz today is only just the start. An impressive fun start! There will be updates expanding on the already impressive features. I had the pleasure of speaking with Jordan Rudess, so you can be assured nothing here is assumed. SpaceWiz is very near and dear to his heart. Hearing him speak about it really got me excited about things to come. A whole new universe (pardon the pun) of possibilities are being dreamed up, considered, and explored with this very unique instrument.

A first for music apps, SpaceWiz has great eye candy thanks to clever implementation of Unity, a well known graphics powerhouse.

!!!!!!UPDATE- Wizdom was real fast with an update adding audio copy, a recordings manager, and .WAV formatting. Making the following info in this paragraph old news already.
Don’t be discouraged that for now SpaceWiz only offers iTunes file share of recorded AIFF format audio files. This is temporary. It wont be long before we see a way to manage recordings, Audio Copy, and .WAV format support.
It does have a nice, and easy MIDI capability, which also supports virtual control of other compatible background apps. This is especially fun with SampleWiz being controlled by SpaceWiz.SpaceWiz suits various moods. From random, chaotic, galactic extremes, rocking the planets, or a tranquil ambient experience awaits. Whether you wish to veg out by rolling the virtual dice for a totally randomized experience that’s never the same thing twice, or you want to drill down to control every aspect and perform to your hearts content, go ahead, the choice is yours.
SpaceWiz certainly will send you on a trip either way in a performance friendly, uncluttered UI.
I am very impressed with the fantastic creativity of this app, and cant wait to see whats next!

Recommended highly to those who enjoy a nice, interactive, audio visual, musically inspiring, and creative experience. Those who are interested in a very unique, imaginative MIDI controller should also find SpaceWiz quite useful and highly entertaining all around, it is just down right fun!

Buy SpaceWiz at iTunes, click HERE !