Cap­ture mu­si­cal ideas

Ap­ple’s Mu­sic Me­mos is a sim­ple way to ex­per­i­ment us­ing your iOS de­vice

Mac Format - - APPLE SKILLS - Hollin Jones

Ap­ple has a good track record of giv­ing away mu­sic-mak­ing apps for next to noth­ing, or

even en­tirely for free. Its lat­est au­dio-fo­cussed app, Mu­sic Me­mos, falls into the lat­ter cat­e­gory and runs on any de­vice that sup­ports iOS 9.1 or higher. Of course, record­ing snippets of sound is noth­ing new, but this clever tool analy­ses what you record into it and de­tects both its tempo and pitch. You can then make some sim­ple ed­its to your record­ing and add some back­ing parts, thanks to tech­nol­ogy bor­rowed from Ap­ple’s Logic Pro soft­ware on the Mac.

The ac­com­pa­ni­ment is partly au­to­matic in the sense that Mu­sic Me­mos guesses the pitch and speed in­for­ma­tion of your record­ing, be it gui­tar, pi­ano or vo­cals, and adds drums and a bass part. Ei­ther of those can be switched on or off, de­pend­ing on whether you want a more stripped-back ac­com­pa­ni­ment or a fuller sound. The re­ally cool thing is it adapts even when you change key or if you speed up or slow down a lit­tle, thanks to the mu­si­cal warp­ing tech­nol­ogy in ac­tion.

For the drums, you can se­lect one of two kits, and also whether the pat­tern uses open or closed hi-hat cym­bals. There are two basses as well, and for ei­ther drums or bass you use an X/Y pad, drag­ging the dot on the pad along its two axes to make the pat­terns louder or qui­eter, and sim­pler or more com­plex. It works what­ever the du­ra­tion of your record­ing, and if the app has guessed wrong you can go into your record­ing and se­lect new down­beats to cor­rect the tim­ing of the drums and spec­ify new chords to mod­ify the ac­com­pa­ny­ing bass part into the right key.

From raw idea to song

Once you’re done, you can add tags to your project for easy search­ing and ex­port the re­sult­ing track ei­ther to iCloud or an­other app, such as iTunes, GarageBand for iOS or Mac, or email it to a friend. Al­though much sim­pler than an app like GarageBand, Mu­sic Me­mos is a fan­tas­tic way to cap­ture mu­si­cal ideas on the go when all you might have with you is your gui­tar and your iPhone or iPad. Be­ing able to add bass and drum ac­com­pa­ni­ment af­ter record­ing, rather than need­ing them first for ref­er­ence, means you’re free to record at the drop of a hat. It’s fast, fun, and best of all, free.

This clever app works out the

tempo and pitch of your

record­ings

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