If you've got a PC, stop reading and go get this download. MusiGenesis ($19.95) by Kenneth Adams is an algorithmic music generator that's as much fun as it is easy to use. Will it write your next hit song? Probably not, but it will provide an endless stream of useful ideas.
MusiGenesis operates in two modes: Tracks and Mixes. In Tracks mode, you create tracks that you associate with built-in sampled instruments. The program provides more than 150 tuned instruments and 180 percussion instruments, and you can load your own samples.
Each track can contain as many as eight 16th-note patterns, each of which is from one to four bars long. MusiGenesis automatically creates and adds notes to patterns, giving you the option to reject each change. You can also manually add and remove notes as well as adjust their volume, pan position, and length (for sustaining instruments).
Mixes, as you might guess, are songs composed of patterns. As with tracks, MusiGenesis automatically creates and adds to mixes, allowing you to reject changes and manually modify them as you go. You can have multiple mixes in a project, but naturally, only one plays at a time (see Web Clip 1).
In addition to saving its own project files, MusiGenesis will export your tracks and mixes as audio files in WAV or MP3 format. It will also export your tracks as Standard MIDI Files. That allows you to extend MusiGenesis compositions in your favorite audio and MIDI applications. You can purchase the full version or download a free save- and export-disabled version of MusiGenesis from www.musigenesis.com.