Review of ChordPotion 2 midi sequencer and effect plugin by FeelYourSound

Review of ChordPotion 2 midi sequencer and effect plugin by FeelYourSound

Introduction

FeelYourSound has released version 2.0.0 of their MIDI sequencer and effect plug-in ChordPotion (VST + AU).

Chord Potion is typically priced at 45 EUR / $49. ChordPotion 2 is a free update for all ChordPotion 1 users.

Celebration deal: Enter the code “Celebration” at the checkout page to get 10% off. Save up to 20% with special bundle prices that are available until 9th July 2020.

The ChordPotion demo is available here

Background

ChordPotion is a composition and performance tool. It can turn any chord progression into new riffs and melodies instantly.

The basic concept is simple: You play your chords in your DAW, send them to ChordPotion, and ChordPotion generates new notes for you that are played on your favorite synth. You can also export the generated notes as standard MIDI files and edit them later on.

The plug-in contains four parallel sequencers. You can create and edit your own sequences from scratch or load one of the many factory patterns to build your own chord transformers.

This video shows ChordPotion in action and explains the user interface:

You can expand ChordPotion with preset packages to cover even more playing styles. For ChordPotion 2, FeelYourSound teamed up with game composer Denis Comtesse to create three free new preset packs:

Keys Mix“: A selection of keyboard presets for various genres (Rock, Pop, Ballads, Blues, Jazz, Reggae, Soul).

Golden Guitar“: Picked and strummed guitars patterns. From folk to triplets to classic playing styles.

Time Oddity“: Various presets for odd meters like 3/4, 5/4, 6/8, and 7/8. Spice up your songs with some arpeggios, basslines, rhythmic chords, or strumming lines.

In-Use

The interface is clean and well laid out.  The top section has 12 page buttons so you can work with different ideas or switch between presets; a sound button to activate the in-built piano sound and the midi drag and drop button.

The bottom bar has swing and octave options along with the preset browser and clipboard, copy save and paste buttons.

Speaking of presets, these are an excellent way to hear the sort of sounds that ChordPotion can produce. There are a range including pop, hip hop, beat, backbeat, edm and piano and there are also a number of expansion packs available like those outlined above.

Creating your own sounds is straightforward and easy and these are designed in the middle part of the interface that has four separate rows to transform incoming chord notes.  You can solo / mute each row, change the velocity, speed and octave for each row and also decide if it plays once or repeats.  For the chord row, patterns are applied to each input note and the melody rows play monophonic riffs like arpeggios and basslines that combine to create complex polyphonic rhythms.  You can also set a different midi channel for each row.

At the end of each row are 2 fx slots that allow you to add a number of options including add notes, remove notes, randomise notes, randomise note length and randomise velocity.  There are also 2 master fx slots.

You can edit a lot of the patterns which brings up a step sequencer window.  

Each step is shown as 0, 1, 2, – or #.  A zero is the bass note of the chord (or all notes), one is the second note (or first inversion) and two is the third note (or third) inversion; – is a blank field and # stops the currently played note.  If you right-click a step you can set the probability of various options such as turning a step into – or #, randomise note, velocity, octave.

ChordPotion will transpose notes as soon as it receives them and the generated output notes are automatically recorded and when you stop your DAW you can drag and drop the midi file.  If you set up each row to a different midi channel, when you export it will export multi-midi files rather than a single midi file. 

Conclusions

This is an excellent compositional tool that takes a different approach to some other similar tools, starting with a chord progression that you create and then ChordPotion enables you to create intricate and complex sounds.

It works very well on instruments as well as percussive sounds and can create simple single melodies such as basslines or arpeggios or much more complex polyphonic rhythms.

What I really like is that it is such an inspiring tool and best of all, fun to use. It’s easy to get to grips with and sounds very musical, the randomise options and fx allow you to add natural variation that means the mechanical feel you get with some sequencers doesn’t happen with ChordPotion. You can feed ChordPotion very simple progressions and it will convert them into full harmonies instantly improving your arrangements.

The export midi function is an excellent addition, this allows you to tweak or save your own midi files for future use, the multi-file export is very handy to save separate melodies and basslines for example.