We started out by using simple LFOs to provide an evolving set of controls to influence the timbre of the resulting sound. Our first target sound was the distinct high frequency oscillations of an electric guitar. This we achieved using an envelope generator and pitch shift, to create the impression of a harmonically evolving guitar. Next, we wanted to affect the timbre of the sound in a more subtle way, and this is where we began to build some nice patches.
A key distinction of the patch is that we took a standard musical phrase and built a melody by weaving together the pieces using the pattern mutation (controlled by pitch bend) function. When you record from a MIDI keyboard, it creates a standard musical phrase which has a “root” note at the lowest pitch you record, and rises to a note at the highest note you recorded. For our system, the function determines the pattern mutations of each note. This means that when the pitch bend function is pressed, the note that was previously recorded is played back, and a random mutation function is applied to it.
Each timbral variation is a unique piece of music, and we are not only limited to making them through pitch shift and envelope modulation, we can create our own patterns using the same principles.
The software has a number of functions to work with, like transposition, sustain and key control. These have become familiar to us as our respective musical instruments.
The default instrument sound is a harmonically evolving guitar sound which starts off with the root note of the pattern, and then proceeds in a way that is similar to the notes of an electric guitar. At the same time, it evokes a subtle timbral impression of an electric organ. The pattern that results from a standard keyboard phrase is one that has a lot of variation.
Our way of providing a level of control is through the LFOs. Our key component is that we use a tempo that corresponds with the length of the phrase you are inputting. If you press a key, and the tempo is slow enough, it will play the phrase until it reaches the end. If the tempo is too fast, the phrase will stop, and only the part of the phrase played up to that point will be played. The LFO controls the tempo. As with most things in software, the control is very granular. So if we are looking for a gradual change in the tempo of the LFO, the control is divided up into 0.1 seconds. This allows us
MIDI Patterns can be uploaded and downloaded to your KEYMACRO. If you want to download these patterns, please contact me.
The following functions can be used to mutate your input patterns:
1. Invert (invert all pitches):
3. Negate (note going down with an upwards pitch bend):
5. Tremolo Pitch Bend:
Note: this software is very experimental, and is not finished yet. I have only used it on a few audio samples, but I plan to release it soon for public use. The amount of control that it provides for the user is unprecedented. I have not been able to find an Atari system that is comparable, so hopefully this will be the ultimate MIDI experiment.
It is very important that the person using this software has a MIDI keyboard with a pitch bend wheel and a sustain pedal. To see how it works, play a few notes in, and then use the pitch bend wheel to change the pitch, and see the effect on the patterns. It’s very cool.
If you have a Atari, just plug it in and you are ready to go. If you are using a PC, you will need an MPU-401 or SoundBlaster compatible MIDI interface, and this may need to be configured before it will work properly.
There’s a huge discussion in the Atari forum here. The best general description of how to use MIDI on an Atari Lynx and the STe is here. You’ll want to be careful to make sure your controller will work and that you have the right adapter. You should read through the whole discussion.
I would strongly advise using the “MUTE” key on the Atari keyboard to disable the internal speakers, which aren’t that good. And to turn the volume down.
Since you have an Atari, see the Atari forum.
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1. Ahobila :
MIDI Pattern Processor lets you record patterns as MIDI files, then processes them using a number of mutation functions.
MIDI Pattern Processor is designed to be integrated into any live performance.
MIDI pattern (source) processing
Transposition of patterns
Arpeggiation of patterns
Inversion of patterns
Random Pattern Generator
Upsampling and downsampling
Low and high frequency filters
Feedback control with pitch bend
Graceful on and off of loops
MIDI Pattern Processor uses a state-machine controller that can be built with a microprocessor and the MIDI interface.
It’s main functions are:
Display of information during pattern playback (tempo, current pattern, …)
Record of patterns on a file
Playback of patterns from file
Upsampling and downsampling of the input
Randomly generating a pattern with the current parameter values
Automatic decay of patterns (length)
Automatic on and off of loops
The pattern processing is handled by the middle level of the MIDI Pattern Processor. It’s a state machine, consisting of all the pattern processing steps in a flowchart.
The same process can be used to create an alternative structuring of your patterns with or without multiplexing. The MIDI Pattern Processor uses the built-in matrix pitchbend control to create a lot of variations of your patterns, such as transpositions, inversions, arpeggiations and so on. The pattern processing is controlled through a number of MIDI controllers. The matrix pitchbend control controls which input is altered at which point in the sequence. The result is a number of different variations of the same pattern, using the pitchbend controller.
E.g. using the matrix pitchbend, it can be created an arpeggiation (repeating a pattern in a different octave) of an instrument pattern.
You can also create your own variations of the same pattern by using the pitch bend wheel to control how the pattern is altered.
You can use your own states of the matrix pitchbend control to start and stop looping, so that your loops last longer, or you can use the built-in functionality to create loops in your patterns.
MIDI Pattern Processor will automatically change to a new pattern when a MIDI controller changes to a new value.
This application is a simple “manipulation” or “modifier” application. You take a series of MIDI pattern sequences and then do whatever you want to them. It is particularly useful for non-traditional scales, like the 21st Century Chromatic or Diatonic, in a way that it is easy to apply this practice in a realtime environment.
You can apply or remove modulation by using the wheel on the MIDI keyboard, which will invert the pattern, and you can apply a vibrato by dragging the track wheel. You can also transpose the pattern and add a shake.
Although the current version of MIDI Pattern Processor is only for the Atari ST, I hope to eventually create a version for the PC that will be released under the GPL.
These are some of the many MIDI Patterns that I have created for the PC version. I will post the latest versions here as soon as I get them working.
1. The Beginning in C# Major – 4/8, 4/4, 1/8, 2/4, 3/8, 1/2, 3/4, 4/8 – Use the wheel on the keyboard to control inversion and transposition.
2. The Chord Scale – 4/8, 5/8, 3/8, 5/4, 7/8, 11/8, 3/4, 5/8, 7/8, 1/2, 3/4, 5/8 – Use the wheel on the keyboard to control inversion and transposition.
3. The Classic Diatonic – 3/8, 3/4, 3/8, 3/8, 1/2, 1/2, 1/2, 1/2, 3/4, 3/8, 1/2, 3/4 – Use the wheel on the keyboard to control inversion and transposition.
4. The Chromatic Scale – 3/8, 3/4, 1/2, 3/8, 5/8, 7/8, 11/8, 3/4, 5/8, 7/8, 1/2, 3/4, 5/8 – Use the wheel on the keyboard to control inversion and transposition.
5. The New Traditional Scales – 3/4, 3/4, 5/8, 7/8, 11/8, 7/8, 7/8, 7/8, 7/8, 5/8, 3/4, 5/8 – Use the wheel on the keyboard to control inversion and transposition.
6. The Chromatic Scale – 3/8, 5/8, 5/4, 1/2, 1/2, 1/2, 3/4, 3/8, 5/8, 1/2, 1/2, 1/2, 5/8,
OS: Windows Vista SP1 or Windows 7 SP1
Processor: Dual Core 2.5 GHz Processor
RAM: 2 GB
Video: 512 MB of Video RAM
DirectX: Version 9.0c
Storage: 4 GB available space
Processor: Quad Core Processor 2.5 GHz
RAM: 6 GB
Video: 1 GB of Video RAM