Get to grips with Patter, a creative MIDI effect for Max for Live that creates truly surprising musical ideas. Its ability to generate unique rhythms and melodies, and deft control over randomization elements make it an exciting tool for those looking for inspiration and experimentation.
Max for Live
by Adam Florin
Patter can help you create wild and experimental MIDI patterns for use with any synth or drum machine. It’s a highly flexible tool that can be used alone for musical inspiration and improvisation, or chained together for real free-flowing creativity. And since it's built in Max For Live, every parameter can be mapped to MIDI hardware for hands-on control.
How it works
Patter generates MIDI a few notes at a time, in “segments”. A segment is made up of one or more notes and rests of equal duration. You control the number and duration of the segments, and with each rhythmic parameter, you can create different amounts of randomization and variation.
Once you’ve created your rhythm, you can add dynamics by tweaking accent parameters and use the pitch control to introduce levels of note randomisation. Then, to narrow down the options, you can select notes spanning three octaves. You can use your MIDI keyboard to input notes on the fly and create a truly unpredictable yet responsive music generator.
The loop function can capture a snapshot of your fluctuating note segments, and create straight-up loops or off-kilter, repeating rhythms. For the most adventurous experimenters, you can combine devices to generate seriously free-flowing ideas: use two to create complex polyrhythms, have several instances of Patter take turns or play in unison on multiple tracks, or even pass control back and forth from neighboring Patters in the same effect rack.