With only a very recent iOS presence Audio Damage has already made a significant mark on the mobile community. Axon 2 is the 10th app that Audio Damage has brought to the platform in what seems to me to be a very short period of time.
As for the app itself it actually looks completely up my street. I’m a big fan of drum synths, and Axon 2 is a lot more than that. It’s a drum synth driven by artificial intelligence. Axon uses a modified artificial neural network as a sequencer, and has seven FM-based percussion voices, that are in effect a single 18-operator FM voice.
If that sounds weird, you ain’t seen nothing yet. It is surprisingly intuitive once you get the knack of it, and is capable of all-new, complex rhythms that repeat in surprising ways. It often gets referenced as a “random sequence generator,” but there is nothing random in Axon; it is entirely determinative.
The sequencer features seven “neurons” that trigger a voice and send a pulse when they have received a predetermined number of pulses. You can wire the output of any neuron to the input of any other (with built-in loop detection to prevent runaway feedback), and in this manner pre-program the artificial neural network without having to go through a “learning” phase.
The seven individual drum voices, each triggered by its attendant neuron, are 2-operator FM voices in a configuration to best make percussion sounds, with additional FM and AM busses that all voices send to and receive from. Each voice has a HPF, distortion circuit, and white noise generator to provide a full range of percussion-oriented voicing individually, while interacting with each other in new and unique ways.
• Artificial Neural Network sequencer features seven neurons, and is easily programmed to create strange new repeating rhythms.
• Seven FM percussion voices that also buss together to create a single monolithic complex percussion synthesizer.
• Full mixer with pan, level, mute, and solo on each voice.
• Built-in stereo delay with X/Y pad control over feedback and filter frequency, for live playability.
• MIDI input, including Bluetooth MIDI, for driving Axon from DAW and hardware sequencers, and Virtual MIDI Output (standalone only) for driving other software with the Axon sequencer.
• Inter-App Audio, including transport synchronization, in standalone mode.
• Internal transport for non-synchronized playback.
• Resizable vector-based user interface.
• Drawn reciprocation dingle arm to reduce sinusoidal depleneration.
• XML-based cross-platform, human-readable preset system, with copy/paste, for easy transferring of your own presets and third-party offerings.
Please Note: This application will work fine on an iPad Mini, but the user interface may be difficult to use due to the size.
I have to say that Axon 2 looks pretty amazing, so I expect I’ll be spending a fair amount of time with it in the coming weeks.
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