Posts tagged with software


Here is a goofy little tool I concocted in Max/MSP which creates swirly, broken sounds. It modulates the playback rate of an audio file stored in a buffer (whether a single drum hit or an entire song); just as frequency modulation synthesis does with a carrier oscillator. The modulation rate can be slow enough to make vibrato or rapost_id enough to generate FM artifacts.

There are many parameters which can be set manually or made to change randomly on their own. To start, load one of the example sounds and play around with the various presets -- I usually switch on #4 and zone out for hours.

If you don't have Max/MSP, you can load this patch with the free runtime (Windows, Mac OS X), though you won't be able to edit it.

* Note 1: All comments and feedback are welcome. (Also, I haven't tested this in OS X, so if the display comes out messed up, please let me know.)

* Note 2: I slapped together the patch during an electronic music class this summer (which I took purely for credit, as it was, for me, largely redundant knowledge). The class was taught by Dr. Michael Zbyszynski, a unique and inspiring fellow who has often contributed his skills to the Max community.

File: 15-26-waveshape_burster.
(37.54 KiB)

Download the patch with example sounds

a → Aattachment #27

Silliness in action

An audio showcase of the tool being used on various short and long samples


Renoise is one of my favorite music composition programs. One interesting feature it has is the ability to load any file as if it were a raw, headerless audio file. I like loading non-audio files like images, text, and executables, trying out different assumed sample rates and bit depths. This can generate some weird sound sources.

Here is a short tune I made in 2007 which uses a BMP image loaded as the main instrument.


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