Nanostudio for iPad and iPhone is the best thing for portable
music-making since Bhaji’s Loops on the Palm five years ago. It gets
away from pattern-based song generation apps like Tabletop and Rhythm
Studio, which although lovely and fun toys, still make hard work of
joining instrument and drum patterns into a decent track. Their history
lies in 80s sequencers and drum machines, and after the misty eyes have
cleared, we remind ourselves that we’re in a new world of fancy new touch
screens and UI and can transcend historical limitations. On that line,
Garage Band is very impressive but the instrument UIs seem to count
more for folks than the sheer sonic potential that I’m looking for.
With Nanostudio on iPad and iPhone, and Nanosync on the Mac to upload
samples and download the tracks, I’m ready to do some creative battle.
Serious creativity requires discipline, which for me means deadlines and
constraints, so my Linchpin-style plan is this: finish one short track
every week, and ship it to the appropriately-titled Nanoscope blog.
The initial rules are:
The track must be created and mastered on Nanostudio, any version, either
on iPad or iPhone
Tracks must be no more than three minutes long. Sketches, vignettes,
impressions, not epics.
Any genre, any samples, any sounds, any bpm.
A track must be posted each week by the end of Monday, local (Melbourne)
Tracks will be named after one of the newest colour schemes on kuler
Short tracks align better with our attention deficit culture. It also means
I can explore more, place a number of smaller bets, and see what pays off.
And, let’s face it, if I don’t have much time, I can quickly throw any old
shit together and call it a conceptual sketch.
There might be some other arbitrary rules or random elements I come up with
over time to enhance the creative process and keep it interesting. And at
some point I’ll stop doing this. We’ll have that discussion then.
The first track is up, just to grease the wheels.