After three years of development, testing, and messing around with it in their own live performances, Bastl say they’ve hit on a recipe for making audio-style looping work with MIDI.
The audio looper is a mainstay of live performance, via products like the iconic BOSS Loop Station. (Okay, Bastl can’t bring up the Roland/BOSS comparison, but I can.) For us electronic performers, though, our ideas aren’t always in the audio domain – sometimes they’re MIDI. That means not just playing notes or hitting drum pads, but also knob tweaks and parameter changes.
So the notion of this cute little Midilooper box is to do all that looping with MIDI in and out (synced via analog or MIDI clock, if you like). And that means all the features and workflows from audio looping, plus a few extras that only work with MIDI.
And wait, since this is MIDI, you can also modulate the messages after they leave the box – meaning things unimaginable in the audio domain. (Thanks, Dave and Roland!)
There’s also analog integration, too – CV and trigger ins can also modulate MIDI. (Time has folded in on itself! You can now use control voltage and MIDI interchangeably! Take that, 1970s and 80s and 90s!)
- 3 independent voices (each has MIDI channel assigned)
- transpose mode
- octave transpose
- quantize, velocity lock, shuffle, humanize
- odd looplengths, time stretch
- mute, clear, erase
- one MIDI Input and two MIDI Outputs
- clock input (accepts analog clock or TRS MIDI Clock)
- analog reset input
- metronome output
- CV input connectivity (transpose, velocity, re-trigger)
- pedal control (record, clear, voice selection)
- USB powered
- adjustable divider/multiplier for analog clock
I’m sure that all of this will have some people dreaming of some new MIDI sequencer, which is not really what this is. But it is an exceptionally clever idea, one that demands new ways of performing.
And maybe what’s most interesting about this box is the fact that you can’t prepare sets on it in advance. This is a live-in-the-moment box for people wanting to work live and embrace improvisation. I’ll be curious to check it out.
Now shipping and on its way to Bastl’s dealers. €289 including VAT in Europe direct, or try your local dealer.