Commission for Generative Music App

  • Greetings! I am involved with a theatrical production and we're using a 64 and 256 as the main music controllers on the project.

    I would like to hire someone to write a program in Max/MSP for the 256 that is similar in nature to the iPhone/iPod Touch app Bloom (by Brian Eno).

    Additionally, I need a few other coding odds and ends. We have a small budget set aside for this work.

    Please email me if you are interested-

    instantjuggler (at) gmail (dot) com

  • Sounds like an interesting project - something to consider...

    Using your monome in MIDI mode (where it just sends note ons to whatever VST you are running) you can easily mimic bloom with a delay plugin. Mind you, you won't have pretty lights shining back at you but if you just want to trigger notes and have them delay for some length of time while slowly fading can do this with no special apps and may not even need MaxMSP.

    For example...monome through monomeserial (assuming Mac) in MIDI mode then into Ableton Live with a synth and a delay on the track you are triggering.

    Hope this helps and good luck with your show!

  • @earsmack don't cockblock. they've got a budget set aside.

  • Thanks for your suggestion!

    Its a good idea... however, the part we need most from Bloom is its generative quality- that the pattern previously entered evolves over time into something else. We like this because it allows the user to step away from the controls and still have the soundscape change, as well as having a "unique" soundtrack each time (and yet also to allow input to the sequence again when time/location of the actor permits).

    I am certainly going to play around with what you said though!

  • I would think there are a ton of people on here who could and would do this for you.

    Can't wait to see the final app, sounds interesting, I might even have a look and see if I can come up with something (but not specifically for you as there's no telling how long it will take with my other commitments).

  • Some sort of combination of parc and flin would probably be pretty awesome.

    Not sure the bloom visuals will work so well in a 256 grid.

  • cockblock. ha!

    i would love to see what manifests from this also!

  • Aaaaahhh, stupid email. Please use

    instantjuggler (at) gmail (dot) com ... changed original post, thanks for letting me know of the error.

    Although, curiously, I did receive your email anyway... (I'll write you very soon!)

  • ha!

    I agree with JP - the possibilities are wide and there is no shortage of help around here.

  • I'm maybe 20% into recreating bloom, gotta say it's rather boring to watch, I think it needs the little expanding circles or something, but I'm not convinced those will work in a 16x16 grid, should have something that can be shared in the next day or two. :-)

  • @ jay gilligan

    Try this application , it might help you, and it 's quite funny, you can create nice texture.

  • that sounds fun. there was a streaming channel that had beethoven's 9th symphony stretched out to 24 hours. it was on day and night. it sounded great! may still be around, called 9 beet stretch.

    edit: yep. here it is

  • This is great (the b9th thing) and kudos to @JP for taking on the bloom patch idea...looking forward to playing with it.

  • Getting there, managed to make a self contained "ripple" effect'ish, adding that and some random tonight, then I might post.

  • JP, thank you! it would be lovely! i will be waiting for this.

  • First quick demo.

    Code is hideous, very 0.1 release. I'll do some clean up and post it in the wiki over the next day or two.

  • Excellent. Very much looking forward to this app. Thanks for all the effort!

  • beautiful already!

  • I've been traveling and didn't see this until just now- totally blown away! Great evolution of the original input sequence... it seems to work really well. Thank you for getting excited- and then unleashing your genius on this!

  • what about including a simple built in synth (sine wave?) and delay in the patch?

  • Things it's really missing at the moment:

    A: Limit on length of input, at the moment you can press as many buttons as you want within the time loop you set, I want to make it a user setting that you can pick the number of notes. Up to a max of 64, there will then be a toggle key that basically shows you an LED for each button, that flashes as it plays. Pressing it would delete it from the loop. This will allow the player to edit a loop at any point.

    B: Based on the limit, once you reach that limit pressing buttons will overwrite the old values, so if I set the length to 5 and enter 5 presses, I can come back and enter 3 new presses it will delete the first 3 in the original bank with the 3 new ones (might get confusing as it's time based, but I can't think of a better way).

    C: Some sort of useable UI, currently it's all over the place.

    Once I have C and maybe B (and A without the toggle page) I'll post the code for anyone to use, update, tweak and extend.

  • @trazmick I won't be adding any internal synth abilities to this, but someone else can if they want. I'd only ever route this to Ableton, so internal sounds are not useful for me. But maybe someone else will fork the code and add that.

    I'm also planning on converting this patch into a Max4live version for easily abelton integration.


    Updated download (very very 0.3 quality), and link to code on subversion on

  • Jay, sorry didn't email you back yet, swamped at work, so I'll have to pass on doing the paid commission, but nothing stopping someone using my code as a starter, I'd prefer if any changes made to it get shared back to the community though. :-)

  • Thanks a million for posting this!!! I think it works great- the evolution of each note works out well. And I've already made a lot of progress integrating it into my set by playing around a lot with the variables you've already included in the patch.

    Of course I'm excited for Bloon because of the project I'm working on, but in general I'm so happy there's another generative app for the monome, a la life, etc., really fun stuff!

  • I need to work out how you could come back to it and "gain control" again. At the moment the only way to remove notes is to delete the whole thing and start again, need to come up with some way you can change them on the fly.

  • @JP maybe something like holding down the keyboard's spacebar switches to "erase mode"?

  • Yeah, another thing I've been playing with is a view where each LED going from top left to bottom right is one of your notes in order.

    On the view each one would flicker as it's played, pressing any of them will remove it from the loop.

  • Nightmorph over on vimeo : "some nice ambient textures here; cool, distant, yet intimate. can it output midi to more than one channel? for assigning different instruments, i mean."

    At the moment it only outputs on 1 channel, it needs to be looked at again for the serialosc stuff, so I can look into some of the more "usability" features.

    One approach might be to make the rows channels, so you can play rows and the notes will drift horizontally (and/or) vertically within the loop.

    I have a notepad somewhere with a giant long list of features I wanted to write, maybe I'll dig it out and have a look.

  • so excited!

    actually, it just occurred to me that i could assign more than one instrument to the same channel. maybe just pick something with very long envelopes, for an ambient pad-sound, and something shorter, like fuzzy bells, for the main melody. seems like that would be a fair imitation of what i saw in the video.

    i've already been doing something similar for improvising with ricochet, and have been looking at giving polygome a similar treatment. multiple sounds fit into different keyzones. i could probably do something similar with bloon.

  • Yeah in that vid I actually sent the midi to 2 or 3 ableton racks, which might be the variation.

    Don't forget as well that vertical is velocity, so you could use that to alter the sounds quite a bit. e.g In ableton if you have sampler, you can change the entire sample stack based on velocity.

  • still work being done on this app or is it ready to go?

    i cant seem to get it working properly

    any help would be appreciated