Cotracks helps you make music with your friends on a single iPad
Apps like GarageBand have made the iPad now an accepted part of the music making and producing process for amateurs,and professionals alike. A quick glance at the Music section of the App Store and Google Play shows just how big a market this has become, as fully fledged professional software at high-end prices sit alongside free apps – all offering varying ranges of creative power and inspiration.
Cotracks by Futucraft is the latest app to show up on the radar, and the reason for that is the app’s big focus on collaboration – in particular the possibility of up to four people getting creative on the same device. Cotracks’ biggest strength is its interface, which can be adapted in a single tap to suit single, dual or four-person usage on one device. Combined with the support of multitouch gestures, it means that an entire group of friends, or indeed a band, can gather around a single device and all get creative without being disrupted by others. The app can handle as many taps and swipes as four sets of hands can throw at it, and it means that a unique creative session can start up at any point and there is a great feeling of freedom that comes with that.
The single-person mode has a vertical interface with four sections of touch input on offer, each one able to handle three tracks, and each layer one of three main instruments – two synths and a drum pad. Each one of these instruments has various types to choose from, differing in sound hugely, so there is no shortage of choice and variation when it come to finding a sound.
In each of the four sections users can customise the look and sound of everything, with touch controls to tweak pitch, create a loop or sequence as well as alter the layout of the touchpad used to create a beat. It’s impressively customisable, and it means that whether it’s one user or four, everyone who’s interacting with Cotracks can be completely comfortable and in control.
When it comes to the collaborative nature of the interface things are incredibly smooth. In single user mode, the third section down houses a button labelled Sessions; directly below this is a set of three buttons, and from here the screen can be adjusted effortlessly depending on how many users are involved. Two-person view spins around two sections to face the opposite way, so a second user at the other end of the iPad can being editing. Tap the four-person option and each of the four sections jump out to face a side of the device, making it easy for four people to huddle over the device and get creating individually yet still working together.
Having everyone working in the same space makes it very easy to come together and share sequences and loops that are created. Users can drag and drop sequences from one window to another should they want to get exactly in time with someone else in the app. What this collaboration setup also opens allows is the possibility of users with different sets of skills working together. For example, the musician of a group of friends could put together a sequence before handing it over to a novice, who can then put a creative stamp on it by tweaking effects and other aspects. Cotracks offers the chance for everyone to be equal and that potential is very powerful in an area of the App Store that while very diverse, can still feel niche to those without much musical talent but still want to get involved.
This highly-accessible app offers that opportunity, and the fact that it can be done on a single device makes it a great alternative to GarageBand jamming sessions. This is an entertainment app that regardless of musical ability, users will get a great kick out of, especially if used by a group huddled over a single device, throwing sequences around and getting creative in an intuitive space that has some unique sounds tucked away in its many menu options.
Cotracks is a great platform for creation that has hit upon a clever collaborative setup.
Win a PowerUp 3.0 smartphone-controlled paper airplane
Take to the skies with your own paper drone with PowerUp 3.0Read more...
Browse over 67,000 titles and manage your lists on the move with the LOVEFiLM iPhone appRead more...
Blurring the line between games and reality, EpicWin is a great app for the Scott Pilgrim generationRead more...
A free app from The North Face that will prove useful for bikers and hikersRead more...
SAS Survival Guide
John Wiseman’s best-selling surviving SAS Survival Guide comes to the iPhone. But how do we recharge the battery in the jungle?Read more...
A simple but effective instant messaging service, WhatsApp allows you to chat with anyone on your contacts list as long as they also have the WhatsApp Messenger appRead more...
If you like reading about tech and you have an iPhone or iPad, the Engadget app is well worth a lookRead more...