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cirklon vs analog sequencers melody
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> 5U Format Modules  
Author cirklon vs analog sequencers melody
Analog Music
I know the Cirklon is a very advance sequencer with many options and on paper is way more powerful than analog sequencers like the Moon 569 and
Grp R-24 but I see people come up with melodies and grooves easily with those same analog sequencers R-24 , 569 .

So my question is , is it easier to come up with melodies and grooves (Berlin school etc ) with analog sequencers than with something as advanced as a Cirklon if so why is this .

I know with the Cirklon you actually pick the notes you want but with the analog sequencers it seems you just tweak until you hear something that you like , is this correct ?
ach_gott
I imagine that most people who work with the Cirklon and similar sequencers also set it to run and write by ear. If you're going to start with a progression and write it out in some fashion, a software sequencer is an easier way to go about it. Twisting each sixteenth note on an encoder to the right value is slow work.

The difference is one of complexity and immediacy. I'm working on a piece of music with multiple analog sequencers because it's tactile and not fiddly and I fuck around and tune the VCOs by ear and it will either come together or fail to gel. But it is very immediate.

Starting with the Cirklon, I pick a voice-per-track and have to plan things out a little more and then I sort of tune everything to a standard (because otherwise the notes won't make any sense which I find very distracting). But then there's a lot of leeway to modulate keys, randomize some shit so that the song is always sort of surprising/interesting to me, etc.

If you're doing straight analog sequencing, I think (and YMMV) that the sounds themselves have to evolve more to keep things interesting. At the same time, the pieces have to be longer and more repetitive because, frankly, that repetition is the only way to emphasize how the voices have changed. That, in turn, provides the piece's structure/global rhythmic structure. And that's sort of the core of the Berlin sound as I think of it.
josaka
its about the person not the sequencer..
Stereotactixxx
I haven't owned my Cirklon long enough to really know where I will land with it workflow wise, but so far I have mainly used it to realize melodies and sequences that I already had a clear idea about, and that couldn't be created with my analog sequencer. With my analog sequencer, a Quad sympleSeq, I have more resorted to flipping switches and turning knobs until it sounds good.

Basically, I think it depends on how you like to work and what melodies and sequences you want to create.

EDIT: I can also add that so far I like the process of working with analog better, while the resulting product of working with the Cirklon is more enjoyable.
Ockeghem
Cirklon can handle pattern-based music or melodies with free improvisation.
Sequencer modules (960, Q-119, GRP, Moon 569, STG set) are best at patterns and realtime variations on these patterns.
So if I were sequencing a classical or jazz piece, the Cirklon would be way better.
With a Berlin school style, you might go either way...
I'd be interested in JLR's opinion as he has used most of the above.
The Cirklon is intimidating if you don't like reading manuals. But I'm the type that reads them cover to cover!
Colin is moving to Berlin, so can you get more "Berlin school" than that, I don't think so?
lol
josaka
no one talks about the zaquencer much.. its cheap and as good if not better than most of the others.. if you want crazy funky rhythms it cant be beaten..
there are no demos I have seen that show what its capable of..they just show bog standard stuff.
kindredlost
ach_gott wrote:
...If you're doing straight analog sequencing, I think (and YMMV) that the sounds themselves have to evolve more to keep things interesting. At the same time, the pieces have to be longer and more repetitive because, frankly, that repetition is the only way to emphasize how the voices have changed. That, in turn, provides the piece's structure/global rhythmic structure. And that's sort of the core of the Berlin sound as I think of it.


This is a very good analysis.

I have never used the Cirklon although I've always lusted after one, but I do have a Future Retro Mobius which is similar in some ways to the general method involved. There are some very deep digital sequencers and some less so (like the Mobius) and by the same token there are some deep analog step sequencers like the GRP and 569 and there are some less complicated ones like the 960 and Q119.

For my workflow it is useful for me to keep sequences simple and use cv routing to introduce the subtle and more complex diversity into the chain. Using two simple sequence patterns to interact is more of my idea of fun than endless tweaking of a complex digital sequencer. It really is all the same but the approach and set of constraints help me rein in the infinite options available with a robust digital sequencer. There is also something tactile and visceral about the hardware and cv routing that is inviting for me. I look at a deep sequencer like the Cirklon and it's POOF-Mind Blow! I need simple.

I'll tip my hat to MY favorite step sequencer, the STG Time Suite. The 960 comes in a close second due to the classic nature of it's design but the STG set have some very good interacting features and coupled with the new Switch module and dividers make for a very stable and endlessly interesting flexibility. I also have a tendency to derive pleasure from the sparse Berlin School method of repetition versus subtle change. Makes me sound dated but I like it.
JohnLRice
FWIW I had a Cirklon for maybe a year or two but i never really got very far with it. waah

Partly because it was too complex for me to figure out without spending quality time with the manual and that didn't sit too well with me because my day job at the time was designing and programming software applications and a lot of my 10 to 15 hour days was writing and reading my code along with reading programming manuals and lots of Google searches all to make things work as well as possible so when I had an hour or three to spend in the studio I really didn't want to have to figure out MOAR stuff! Dead Banana

Sometimes I'd try to force myself though because I knew that once I learned it, it would be awesome but I'd give up fairly quickly if i couldn't make it happen. When I got into a desperate money crunch a few years ago I sold it because it was just sort of sitting in the rack waiting for the day that I could get my head around it. I still occasionally consider getting one again but I've not done so yet, partially because there is a long waiting list that doesn't encourage impulse buys. hihi

I think one thing that put me off is that I wanted to be able to dial in notes with the step encoders (with CV I/O expander) while listening to the output of a VCO but there didn't seem to be a way to do it, at least at the time. hmmm..... seriously, i just don't get it I guess I was too used to Q119, Q960 and M569 sequencers by that time and I was having trouble adjusting my workflow style and expectations. This may have changed because there seems to be lots of new features being added all the time.

This is one of the first things I did when I had it, and a lot of the melodies/patterns were probably programmed by the previous owner and I was mainly just turning tracks on and off with some sync'd arp improv over the top. Once setup I think the Cirklon's performance features really shine.
[s]https://soundcloud.com/johnlrice/ravin-about-cirklon[/s]
Analog Music
JohnLRice wrote:
FWIW I had a Cirklon for maybe a year or two but i never really got very far with it. waah

So John would you agree it's easier to come up with melodies and grooves on a analog sequencer , if so why is that , is it the quantizers or the fact that you use your ears more instead of focusing on music theory .

I never used a analog sequencer and was thinking of getting a Grip R-24 (hard to find ) .
The Cirklon is great but it seems people come up with interesting melodies quick and easy on analog sequencers and I'm just trying to figure out why is that .
Or maybe I'm thinking about this all wrong .
johny_gtr
Quote:
So if I were sequencing a classical or jazz piece, the Cirklon would be way better.
A way easier will be just playing by hands and recording in Ableton/Cubase. After it choosing sequence and duplicate, duplicate, duplicate.
josaka
Analog Music wrote:

I never used a analog sequencer and was thinking of getting a Grip R-24 (hard to find ) .

no... just go to GRP website


Analog Music wrote:
The Cirklon is great but it seems people come up with interesting melodies quick and easy on analog sequencers and I'm just trying to figure out why is that .
Or maybe I'm thinking about this all wrong .

its not.. if you are good at "sequencing " its pretty much the same on any machine.. all that differs are the timing options and play styles.. digital /analogue understanding what makes a sequence good is the key..
Ockeghem
johny_gtr wrote:
Quote:
So if I were sequencing a classical or jazz piece, the Cirklon would be way better.
A way easier will be just playing by hands and recording in Ableton/Cubase. After it choosing sequence and duplicate, duplicate, duplicate.

I meant, easier than with a Q960, say. Try getting a jazz solo out of a Q960. Not what it's best at, let's say.
All Cubase or Ableton adds to the Cirklon is audio recording, choice of VST instruments and effects, etc. Cirklon records MIDI just fine. As MIDI sequencers they are fully capable.
They work together nicely as well, the Cirklon controlling Cubase, or Cirklon slaved to the DAW, controlling VSTs, five hardware synths, a groovebox, and a modular, without breaking a sweat... thumbs up
JohnLRice
Analog Music wrote:
JohnLRice wrote:
FWIW I had a Cirklon for maybe a year or two but i never really got very far with it. waah

So John would you agree it's easier to come up with melodies and grooves on a analog sequencer , if so why is that , is it the quantizers or the fact that you use your ears more instead of focusing on music theory .
For me it's easier to use a keyboard than any sequencer for basic melodies but creating harmonies to melodies is easier for me with a sequencer, probably because I can setup the main melody and then experiment with the additional lines.

Analog Music wrote:
I never used a analog sequencer and was thinking of getting a Grip R-24 (hard to find ) .
The Cirklon is great but it seems people come up with interesting melodies quick and easy on analog sequencers and I'm just trying to figure out why is that .
Or maybe I'm thinking about this all wrong .
GRP R24 was super easy to get, I just emailed them, they had one in stock, I paid and got it! thumbs up

I think any kind of sequencer can be productive and inspiring if it works in a way that makes sense to you and you learn how to use it well. There is no one right answer, it will come down to each person needing to try different sequencers to find what will work well for them.
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