|SoftStep Preview |
SoftStep is a modular MIDI step sequencer patterned after the modular analog step sequencers. The big ones, with lots of knobs and blinky lights. But SoftStep goes far beyond its step sequencer roots, to give you algorithmic composing tools of all kinds, including fractal, chaos, probability, and numerical based algorithms of virtually unlimited flexibility.
To create a MIDI composition with SoftStep you create the modules and connect them together to produce a MIDI data stream that drives any MIDI synthesizer, or sound card. It will make a standard MIDI file for your web page, to insert into your music notation sequencer, or just play with any MIDI file player.
You can begin with a simple sequence, and then repeat, modify or combine and recombine it with other sequences. Not only do you hear the changes instantly, you also see them. SoftStep modules are visually dynamic, with values changing, lights blinking, indicators flashing. This visual dynamic is what sets SoftStep apart from other modular algorithmic programs, that let you make the connections but otherwise give minimal visual feedback. With SoftStep, even large, complex patches are easy to follow because nearly every module gives an animated visual indication of its processes.
A review in Electronic Musician Magazine says: "A fascinating program from Algorithmic Arts, SoftStep responds to your playing in creative and spontaneous new ways. Play a major scale on your MIDI controller, and the software responds with an exotic microtonal cluster. Play a few more notes, and it responds with a soft, delayed version of the melody at a tempo determined by your playing Velocity. When you pause for more than a specified period, a long arpeggiated chord sounds. The harmony unfolds in response to biological information from genetic code, and a background rhythm responds to the patterns of a fractal image on the screen. Those are only some of the musical scenarios you can produce with SoftStep."
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