The DS’ stylus and touchscreen make an ideal pocket-able interface: they’re coupled with friendly, conventional arcade buttons, but provide precise control of visual interfaces without using a mouse. (Touch with fingertips is not nearly as accurate, especially on tiny screens.) That’s already inspired quite a bit of music software, but GrooveStep earns extra points for employing a friendly interface for easy, quick pattern sequencing.

Official GrooveStep Site, which includes a limited Flash editor interface demo.


Liz and I got to meet up with GrooveStep creator Martin Robaszewski at winter NAMM, but we weren’t allowed to talk about it — until now. What I can tell you that might not come across in the video:

  • It’s ridiculously fun.
  • The samples sound fantastic. (That humble DS headphone jack can make sounds, folk.)
  • It’s really, really fast: the minimal interface makes on-the-fly pattern making pretty quick.

Official specs so far:

Song Features:
16 tracks with up to 2 samples per track
Tempo: 30-300 BPM

Pattern Editor features:
Variable pattern length: 1-64 steps
Variable pattern playback speeds: 1x, 2x, 4x

That’s all we have in the way of official info: release information is all in the future (when, where, how much, publisher, etc.). But with this and Korg’s DS-10, plus Pro Performer, NitroTracker, and DSMusic Interface (now including Wifi and serial alike), the DS is one hot little mobile music platform.

Side note — hey, bad news; it looks like the DSerial2, the DS serial interface with tilt, is no more? Anyone heard more about this?