Midicake ARP is a desktop multi-channel arpeggiator that will sync to your sequencer and generate beautiful patterns of arpeggiating splendour.
This is a quite exciting-looking box of melody that could bring beautiful things to your performances. ARP has four channels of arpeggiation that will sync up to your sequencers and change intelligently as your performance evolves. Midicake says there’s “no such thing as random” which is both a brave and intriguing statement in the world of DAWless electronic music. The box has been knocking around for a little while but the news is that it’s almost ready, the first units are testing the release firmware and we should get a price and release date very soon.
The basic idea, because it’s an arpeggiator rather than a sequencer, is that it responds to chords. This can be chords coming in from your sequencer or performance, or chains of chords programmed into the ARP itself. The little keyboard interface lets you select the chord root and then the row of buttons sets the type of chord. So it’s very easy to set up these arps.
There are many functions to play with once you have your chords. You can fiddle with the direction of notes, timing, steps, octaves, velocity and so on. This includes outputting chords and the creation of your own arpeggiations.
As you have four channels to play with there’s a lot of scope of the ARP taking on the role of a sequencer or the hub of your performance. It really does depend on what you’re trying to do.
I like the ease with which you can mute out channels, set up chord cycles or just let it follow whatever is coming in. The four macro knobs at the top make it easy to dial in variations and control various parameters on the fly. If you are controlling a number of desktop synths the ARP could take out a lot of the complexity of trying to sequence everything together. It’s like having someone play along with you.
I think I’m only scratching the surface. Check out the video below for a deeper dive into how it works.
- Midicake website.