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Gear: Review: Polyplayground for iPad

MSRP: $5.99, Mike Gao Mobile

Los Angeles beatsmith Mike Gao has designed an iPad app aimed at allowing users to easily create complex chord structures and melodies using color-coded buttons and geometric patterns rather than a traditional piano keyboard. The result is a program that is part MIDI controller, part music-theory lesson, and part music-making mind fuck. In other words, not your average app. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/27/2012

Gear: Review: Figure for iPhone

MSRP: $.99, Propellerhead

Propellerhead—the maker of Reason, ReCycle, and other such noteworthy pieces of music-production software—has tried its hand in the mobile app game, releasing a simple application that is intended to fill those brief minutes of boredom and in-between moments when you just need to punch out a quick beat. The resulting program is unbelievably fun and even a little addictive, but is by no means a professional (or even amateur) music-making platform. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/25/2012

Gear: Review: Animoog for iPad

The Animoog app for the iPad has its share of limitations, mainly due to the fact that's it's limited to a 9.5" x 7.3" screen. That said, it's still one of the best-sounding and performing software synthesizers on the market today, especially considering its incredible price point, giving you access to a polyphonic "eight-timbre" synth based on classic Moog sounds for under $30. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/20/2012

Gear: Watch T. Williams Talk Production Techniques

UK DJ/producer T.Williams released a five-track EP, called Can We, just last month via Portugeuse imprint Enchufada, from which the punchy "Synthia" tune is lifted. Here, the talented artist talks to London's Point Blank production school about how he went about crafting the oddball track in Logic, including all of the interesting details that process involved. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/12/2012

Gear: In the Studio: Anenon

Los Angeles resident Brian Allen Simon has positioned himself as a somewhat unique figure within the current pack of budding electronic producers. Crafting lush, patient tracks as Anenon, Simon recently moved a step beyond many of his contemporaries when he unveiled the gorgeous (and XLR8R Pick'd) Acquiescence EP last month. The five-track endeavor showcased layers of virtually untouched, natural sound sources—mainly a grand piano and Simon's own saxophone musings—alongside expansive and blissful soundscapes. Needless to say, we were curious how Simon managed to fit these disparate sonic sources together, both on record and in his largely improvised live sets, which usually feature the producer alongside his laptop, saxophone, and the ever-mysterious Monome. We caught up with the Non Projects label head in the weeks before the release of his debut LP, Inner Hue, in order to glean a bit of insight into his process. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/09/2012

Gear: Propellerhead Releases iOS Music-Making App

Taking even the most cursory glance over the Music category in any app store, it's hard to miss the numerous programs available to help you tap out beats on the fly, but that doesn't make Propellerhead's addition to the marketplace any less exciting. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 04/04/2012

Gear: Vlek Announces Music-Making App for iPad

Modeling analog hardware into the world of music software isn't an uncommon practice, as there are plenty of apps and DAWs emulating throwback synths and drum machines out there today. But a music-making app that allows the user to draw their own instruments onto a blank canvas? With MIDI capabilities, to boot? Vlek, the locally sourced Belgian imprint that Bubblin’ Up artist Cupp Cave/Ssaliva calls home, will introduce an app for the iPad that does just that, later this spring. Read more » 

  • Filed under: gear
  • 03/30/2012

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