How to get out of the "step sequencer" effect for notes and achieve more musical sequencing ? + velocity issues

Hi !

I think I will buy Phasesque and Entrian Melody, because it looks to allow a lot more versatility while composing melodies and chords. As I began music with drums when I was a child, I like to create huge generative polyrhythms and this is my main game with VCV.

But when I want to compose some nice chords and melodies, it sounds very basic, poor compared to the rhythmic part.

I want to buy Phasesque because it has a gate length by step and some clever function where it can reset itself on clock more or less naturally even if everything in it is completely out of tempo, and Entrian because it can write melodies in stone, on top of the generative layers.

But I’m sure I can fgo further in having more control over my melodies without purchasing new modules. I know that once I have a piano roll and a crazy ass sequencer, I might not try to achieve cool generative melodies.

I’m struggling with understanding how I can merge long and short notes to achieve musical phrases. Legatos. Fortes. Embellishments (ornaments).

I would love to have some pointers. I’d like to upload some videos of my racks and less struggle with the notes will allow me to do so :slight_smile:


----- About velocity issues ; I can use a VCA and a gate sequencer to lower some notes but it will cut into the tail and eventually render clicks. So it must be another option to achieve velocity ?

To break your notes out of the steady beat of a clock, these come to mind:

you could always just omit triggers, by chance (Bernoulli gates) or other means.

Burst modules like repelzen’s re-burst can be very useful to create more sophisticatedly timed melodies more akin to something which might be sung or played in a solo

Also, something like Eugene with sparse triggers, that you shift around, CV control for the number of hits to dynamically change the density. Stuff like that.


take a look at these 2 free piano-roll sequencers


Another question:

What’s your DAW of choice for ‘classical’ composing chords and melodies?

For changing things up between short and long notes in a generative way, you can use something like bogaudio dgate to modulate gate length with ADSR envelopes (and modulate sustain too for some level changes) or you can just modulate the decay on an AD envelope to change length.

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The Scorovnik is a step sequencer that can do a series of standard notes (whole, half, quarter, eighth, dotted). MscHack has one also. So, if you are looking to still make motifs, but using different length notes, these may help.


@purf nice, i’ll try both. I use Bernoulli gates already, it omits triggers and it’s cool to substract some notes.

@Ahornberg I already tried RCM Piano Roll but had no luck with sync, it didn’t want to stay in sync (reset issue, I didn’t find a solution). I subscribed to Squinky Labs, I’ll try it !

I use Ableton Live 10. At the time of this post I was really annoyed because I couldn’t sync Live & VCV. I tried Stellare Link, it syncs thru Link but no start/stop feature. I just found Max for Live’s CV modules and it’s working like a charm thru Bridge, so I think that if I want to use a Piano Roll I’ll use Live’s, I’m used to. I can pimp the midi with randomness once it’s in VCV. But it’s nice to do everything inside VCV, I’ll continue to figure out things.

@steve Sure. It’s nice to generate different gate lengths but the gate position won’t change accordingly.

Back in the day I was using Five12 Numerology on my old macbook, and it was great to create midi sequences. I had a pattern sending long random notes inside a scale with repeating steps at different rates, and it had chances of launching another 1/16 sequence for X bars, nothing was on the same duration, I’d like to achieve this in VCV and I’m sure it’s possible, I’ll try things

@rickglasser It looks like what I’m looking for, I’ll subscribe.

I remember that repeating step feature, is there a way to tell a sequencer “repeat step 4, 1/16, 5 times” ?

From my perspective, none of the VCV modules providing a piano roll can compete with all that overwhelming MIDI-note and MIDI-CC editing features provided by the major DAWs like Ableton, Bitwig and so on.

I think, a tracker would fit more into the concept of the Rack, because there’s the NerdSEQ in Eurorack, and because a tracker consumes much less space on the screen than any piano roll I know out there.

In my vision, I dream of a module that can switch between a piano roll view and a tracker view, maybe in a way it is done in Radium

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I was into Renoise some years ago, it’s awesome. I’d like to learn it in depth, the tracker way offers a wonderful way of sequencing stuff. I love the workflow. I’ll look into Radium, seems nerdy enough x)

I tried again to sync Live & VCV via M4L CV modules. It works but if I record stuff, Live crashes. So it’s useless, because I do this to record VCV into Live. I want to find a way to sync both but Bridge seems to have a lot of issues, since it’s deprecated. If I succeed at some point I think Live will be my piano roll, will be much simpler this way, when I want to have some written parts in VCV.

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