Sequencer strategies

I do this too. And the. Use o_C to quantize and ERica Synths DS for the tiggers (both melodic and percussion).

It sounds pretty awesome!

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I don’t have modular but very much enjoy sequencers.

I think for me the type of sequencer is pretty key to both getting interesting results and enjoying using the sequencer itself.

Some of my favourite sequencers are the combo of a tr606 triggering a sh101, the jx3p, cubase on the Atari and more recently been really enjoying the Yamaha Qx1.

Each has a place, be it speed, tactility, arrangement or thought process and/or planning.

The QX1 specifically has a really complex combination of button presses and menu diving and the sequencer itself is huge warranting it’s own stand. The buttons tho, they sound so good to type on. I can sit at that sequencer for hours and get hardly anywhere and be very satisfied. It feels like I’m programming some big computer system in some old sci-fi.

With the qx1 you can also key in notes from the keys, and hitting shift and a key scales down the octaves, and hitting the key without shift scales up the octaves, which sounds super nice.


This is a great abstraction of gamelan music!


One thing I like about Rene is that is allows very intuitive multi tempo control with WYSIWYG patching. I liked Rene for generating basic melodic ideas and as a gate sequencer.
Rene 2 I find more convoluted but with z mod and snake mod you can definitely get complex polyphony. One thing that annoys me is no keyboard entry of notes. It is a bit tedious to program and recall, so I haven’t explored it yet as much as I should have.

I use an Entropy Engine, sometimes combined with sample and holds as described by Crim above and like mdg said mixing in random octaves and semitones with precision adders. I also switch gates between melodies or break melodies by chance across voices.
It is fun to ride the tempo knob, and it can be clocked using PNW expander to DIN, although not multitempo.

I wish there was something in modular that had the programmability of Nerdseq with the patching philosophy of Rene, keyboard input and unquantized record option.

I find pure Todd Barton style timbre and building-block patch exploration very interesting. Rhythmic manipulation is cool too, but for this I usually think simpler (something that could be played by hand) is better for arrangement.

I find generative melodic music gets boring after a few bars and no amount of FX can cover up a lack of modal development.

If I’m seriously writing, I may have begun an idea on modular, but if it doesn’t sound right quantized, I will play it out on keyboard, and for development unquantized midi mapped to cv is still king.
Sad but true, at least for me.

Then same randomizing techniques applied.

ah i forgot my favorite and simplest sqncr:

slope output channel into quantizer voltage input(set to desired scale)
second slope as desired tempo clock to quantizer trig in (to tell it when to grab voltage)
and there you will have a cyclic feel of seq/arpeg voltage but it wont repeat, feels elegant to me.

an attenuated falling ramp wave is my favorite voltage for this quant input/patch concept.

a pulse multiplier can be used to add rhythm spice (melange) via modcan quad lfo staircase out to quantizer voltage input. quantizer senses change in voltage. the number of steps to staircase goes between 1 to many steps under voltage control within one “waveform cycle” so # of steps = clock multiplier.

i like to send that multiplied clk to another slope as a combo of vc eg with built in divider to get said speed spice as envelope. fixed/minimal voltage to manually or subtly impact division.

clocked delay is another fun destination for this multiplier as a complicator to sequence as audio end. copies are copying.


I do this a bunch. Sometimes with Rene (using a four step with each row slightly different and then selecting row via the Y mod, can bend out a variety of timbres that way) and also the DFAM which is great for this approach.

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