We caught a whiff of this bonkers box back in November but now it’s ready to unleash its craziness upon the world of modular percussion and MIDI synthesis. Crazy8 Beats is available now for a tempting €303.
It draws a lot of similarities to their regularly bonkers “Crazy8” sequencer but this time the focus is on percussion. The little 303 style keyboard has been replaced with drum machine style buttons. We have a whole load of trigger and CV outputs for getting into your analog gear. But also inside are 8 tracks of MIDI sequencing.
There are 16 patterns per track, with 16 steps and 16 patterns can be chained into a song. Simply enable the buttons to sequence the pattern, or you can play it in live if you prefer. 4 sequence modes play it forwards, backwards, ping-pong and randomly. The 64 step LEDs allow you to see 4 tracks at once. CV can be engaged on any button and transformed to any value using the rotary encoder.
It really does seem deliciously playable. Check out the video below for a quick walkthrough.
In the tools department, the all-important “Crazy” tool gives you control over the probability of steps occurring. You can both increase and decrease probability to the point of ridiculousness. You can also get into the swing settings, tempo, copy/paste patterns and engage the Drill for some racheting.
The MIDI side operates on two ports of 8 tracks each. Each track can be assigned a MIDI channel and a note number and then you can sequence away. Use the MIDI input to record melodies or percussion directly into the Crazy8 Beats.
The controls are minimal and yet the interface design is really quite elegant and gives a lot of versatility with the minimum amount of messing about. You can also take the back off and convert it into a 40HP Eurorack module.
Twisted Electrons Crazy8 Beats webpage.