It seems as our lives are steadily migrating towards the cloud more these days, as exhibited by the growing number of online-based musical apps that can operate completely within your web browser.
What does this essentially mean? It grants you access to instruments and even a complete DAW without the need to install anything on your computer, as most of the apps are Java-based. It also allows anybody to toy around with these complex virtual machines, giving them a chance to explore the world of digital music. The following are some FREE web-based applications you might want to try:
The photo above is Webotribe by Shannon Smith, which is an emulation of Korg’s Monotribe synthesizer. The app has become popular lately because it offers a close representation of the actual machine, from the workflow to the sound. The knobs and controls are easy enough to operate via mouse, and it offers the chance to try the synth virtually before buying one.
There’s also two grid-like step sequencers that emulate the Yamaha Tenori-On, offering a simple (and sometimes creepy) but highly entertaining instrument. It caters primarily to electro and house music, but some great ambient sounds can surface out of it which could have potential uses in film/game scoring.
The Tone Matrix, pictured above, is almost visually identical to the Tenori-On, and offers almost the same sound sculpting capabilities. The Otomata (below) provides the same grid-style operation and can create some interesting patterns as well.
Lastly, another feature-filled web-based musical tool is Naive Solutions’ Audio Sauna. It’s a nice little compact “studio” because it’s layout and operation are similar to higher-end production software and DAWs. It has both an analog and FM synth, as well as a sampler.
Audio Sauna has a great looking GUI, complete with a mixer, piano roll and effects. This free cloud-based app is a great way for people to get a feel of what its like to use professional music production software and virtual instruments. It’s also a easy way to learn the craft if you’ve been thinking about jumping into the foray of computer-based music.
Try the apps out: