A Killer Performance Grid in Renoise Shows Off This Hackable Music Tool

If you just want to fire up Renoise, the modern tracker/music production app, and not worry about the fact that its innards are hackable, you can. But for a reason why you might at least want to explore customization of this music tool, give the video above a look. It starts sleepy and slow … and then, part of the way through, as creator Dac Chartrand starts demoing the tool, something really special happens. (Anyway, that’s what I think. See if you agree.) Dac explains his work, completed at the recent Montreal Music Hackday: My Renoise hack was Grid Pie. …


Face Sequencers, Sonic Databases, Automatic Dub Remixes, More Montreal Music Hackday Hacks

Hard at work at Music Hack Day Montréal. Ed.: Hacking Web databases to search sounds, remixing tools to automatically create dub tunes, cameras to sequence and analyze images in new ways, Montréal hackers have been busy. Trevor Knight writes from the event with full coverage from Canada, latest outpost of this global music coding phenomenon: Music Hack Day made its first appearance in Canada at the end of September, painting the event with a Montréal flavour, complete with bilingualism, Montréal-style bagels, and even an appearance of Stephen Harper in a hack. Over the Saturday-Sunday event, musicians, programmers, and hackers scramble …


Events: Canada Gets Its First Music Hack Day, as Hackers Take Montreal

Good fuel for coding and hacking? Bagels, natch. Photo by Dac Chartrand for CDM. Music Hack Day is an event that’s been gaining lots of steam. Packing engineering experimentation into a marathon session of collaborative, improvised work, followed by lots of sharing, the event tends to focus largely on Web services but also includes novel musical instruments and other inventions. The events have grown in depth, quality, and attendance – the New York event I attended was just massive. (See the intro video below.) And now, for the first time, there’s an event in Canada, in the tech-rich Quebec hub …


Renoise 2.7 Arrives; Q+A on Free Puremagnetik Sounds; Hacks to Come?

Renoise 2.7 is now available, following some eight weeks of testing by the community. The update, which the developers describe as “back to the beats” in reference to focusing in this release cycle on musical workflow, delivers plenty of features that make the modern tracker more modern. I wrote about them back in March, with some detailed Q&A from the developers – including tips on where to get started: Renoise 2.7 Adds Sample and Slice Savvy; Tips and Inside Info from the Developers The short version: better automation, sample slicing, and sample keyzones, plus improved DSP and audio routing and …


Renoise 2.7 Adds Sample and Slice Savvy; Tips and Inside Info from the Developers

Who says we should have only one set of assumptions when it comes to how music software should work? Renoise remains a vision of an alternate reality where mod trackers – musical editors with vertical, pattern-based views instead of horizontal, linear piano roll views – are our present and future. And Renoise keeps getting better and more modern, demanding less of a sacrifice from those coming from other music production tools while strengthening the unique elements of its musical workflow. We get a first look at the new features here for Mac, Windows, and Linux users, as well as the …


Customization-Friendly Renoise 2.6 Arrives; Duplex Controllerism Explained

The tracker for the rest of us – now more customizable. Click for full-sized version. Ever wish your music software could do something your way, something it can’t do now? Wish you could just get in there and change it yourself? That’s some of the ambition of Renoise 2.6, the multi-platform music creation tool. By opening up the entire music tracker to scripting, users can create custom functionality and control surface. But scripting – while it sounds like the domain of hard-core geeks – doesn’t have to be daunting. That’s important, as presumably you want to spend some time making …


MOTU Digital Performer Adds Native OpenSoundControl

And there were three – three major production apps now have OSC control. Once considered the domain of “DIY” apps or developers, OpenSoundControl is beginning to look like a viable option for open, standardized controls of music apps. Open-source Mac/Linux DAW Ardour has fully-documented OSC support as we saw in the spring, and this week tracker Renoise added OSC in a public beta. They join environments like Max and Pd, and a wide range of live visual software. Add to that list DP. MOTU’s Digital Performer is the first mainstream, commercial DAW heavy-hitter to get OSC support, in its 7.2 …


Renoise 2.6 Could Set New Bar for Control, Customization, Openness

Renoise, the tracker-style music production host, has gotten a massive injection of customizability, scriptability, and hackability. If all you want to do is plug in some controller hardware and have more tangible control of music making, that scriptability can be nicely hidden away. But if you are ready to hack on your music app, this is some enormous news. For that reason, Renoise 2.6 is being called even by its makers the “Renoise Geek Edition.” But if this hackability catches on, it could mean a music tool that’s more fun to use for everyone – not just scripting geeks. 2.6 …


Round-up: What Can You Do with Livid’s Custom-Friendly Controllers?

For some time, I’ve been a champion of Livid Instruments’ controller hardware, because I like the principles behind it. The devices are handmade in Texas using sustainable woods and environmentally-friendly stains, are standards-compliant with open specifications, open source software, and driverless class-compliant operation on Mac, Windows, and Linux, and lend themselves to programmability and customization. They certainly have some of the spirit of the open source monome devices, but for anyone who wished the monome grid also had knobs, faders, and such, and didn’t require weird serial-over-USB drivers, it’s nice that we have Livid, too. This is not by way …


Renoise 2.5 is Here, Making Your Mac, Windows, or Linux Box an Instrument

“It looks alien at first, it looks scary … [but] it’s like, here’s your paper; be creative.” “A tracker basically turns your computer an instrument.” -Dac Chartrand, Renoise, trying to explain Renoise to those who haven’t yet gotten religion Renoise 2.5 is here, for real – not a beta, a nice, golden, final release. The modern take on a tracker now introduces a set of features that takes it to a new level of usability: The Pattern Matrix finally combines the inside-out precision of tracker arrangement with a big, birds-eye view of your music – and some people are already …