This past year in iOS music has really leaped forward, cementing the proof that big sound can come from tiny sources, and you do not have to invest in big studio gear, or powerful computers. It’s a revelation of how music is made, and mobility is one of the larger aspects that attract so many people. Virtual Core MIDI & Background Audio are becoming increasingly useful and in my case vital. Will VCM replace ACP?
Will developers increase their support of truly mobile music by removing all requirements for external tethering? Will we see a full fledged (Not really very likely with current iOS hardware) DAW?
Who knows? I do hope the answer in 2012 is yes all around, especially the mobility part. These are mobile devices; requiring wires or external hardware to fully utilize them is old-time thinking that slaps mobility in the face. Perhaps the hardware isn’t ready yet for all the things we might hope for, but surprises continue to prove the doubter wrong all the time.
What follows is a short list of the music apps I think took iOS music to the next level in 2011. It’s been a huge struggle to choose, but it came down to what really got used the most on my iPad, and iPod Touches.
Drum Machine of the year. – Finger Lab brought us The Drum Machine DM-1
Full of the best that history has offered us in hardware drum machines and then some. Loaded with possibilities, ease of use, and crazy fun. Even without ACP it’s hard to deny its greatness.
Simple, fast, and gets the job done. Despite some stability issues, Reforge became my number one editor for my audio bits. No clutter, and light on FX, yet reliable and clean. That’s what kept me coming back to Reforge the most in 2011.
This is one I discovered rather late in the game, but almost instantly became my preferred go to for detailed sequencing.
Creating, sampling, re-sampling, tweaking and all in all one of the more unique interfaces I’ve seen. This made sampling fun.
This was the hardest to choose. In the end it came down to just what got used the most from my collection of iOS synthesizers. Addictive offers so much functionality and possibilities. Not shy on power and complexity, but not difficult to use.
Even before the addition of Reverb and Delay, this app with the 24 tracks has been my work horse for arranging most of my music, including %70 of my album Technopolis Lost. Nothing works more reliably, delivering professional audio, and leads in the user friendly department. This is quality.
Thanks to Blip Interactive for the monumental updates bringing Nano Studio from 6 track cool to iPad Native, and 16 (via IAP) track bliss! With programmable TRG pads galore, powerful Eden Synths, great FX, mixing, editing, easy wireless sharing, and more all wrapped into one Nano package.
iOS Music App Of 2011- Animoog By Moog Music Inc.
Of all the amazing new music apps (including those updated in during the year) Animoog arrived with a huge bang. Maybe not the very first, but certainly one of the very best professional music apps to ever grace both the iPad and iPod Touch screens. A unique retro interface designed for functionality and with an expressive use of the touch surface. This was one of many new amazing iOS synths, and music apps that stood out sonically. Entirely usable, and perfectly beautiful, Animoog is a game changer.
Here’s to all the great music apps of 2011, and cheers to a what was a big year for iOS music.
I know some big developments are going to show up in the new year, and there’s lots to be excited about for 2012!