PolyRhythm: a poly-rhythm generator and visualiser

A poly-rhythm is the simultaneous playing of two rhythms that we (depending on our cultural context) perceive as being unrelated, or not derived from one another - for example playing 5/4 time superimposed over 4/4 time. Examples are found in sub-Saharan African musical traditions and in modern jazz music. Peter van der Noord’s app allows you to randomly generate poly-rhythms, create your own from scratch and visualise them as spinning disks.

Web Audio, the ugly click and the human ear

When you first start playing with parameter automation in Web Audio a very common problem is the generation of “clicks” - unpleasant sounds caused by suddenly changing value of a parameter. In this article you can learn what causes these clicks, hear their effect and importantly learn how to avoid them.

Making a WebGL music video

Charlie Gleason of the band Brightly has made some beautiful web-based music videos including Tweetflight and I will never let you go. In this detailed post he goes into more detail on the latter and how it was put together using WebGL, WebRTC, Three.js and the Imgur API.

Luden’s Beat Box

This is a really-well executed MPC-style beat box implemented using Web Audio and the react framework. The beatbox is fun to play with, but the meat of the interest is in the reddit post that announced it - there the authors go into some detail on the architecture, the use of React and Webpack, and how they created a version that works on browsers where the Web Audio API is not supported.

Should your web audio app have a limiter?

If you play several sounds at once, there’s a good chance you will cause clipping - an unpleasant distorted sound caused by saturating the dynamic range of your output device. To avoid this, you can use a “limiter” - although as Sebastian Zimmer discusses in this blog post, it’s not quite as simple as dropping a DynamicsCompressorNode into your node graph.

Pierre Boulez

Pierre Boulez, the French composer, conductor and founder of the research institute at the centre of many of the most important advances in computer music IRCAM, passed away in January. The UK’s Guardian carried an in-depth obituary, and the current director of IRCAM, Frank Madlener, shared his thoughts in French and English on the IRCAM website.