August 2, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Musyc Shapes the Way You Create, Listen, and Share

Musyc's main menu

The main menu in Musyc

Musyc from FingerLab, puts music on a canvas. It’s fun, and it’s free (for starters anyway), if you already have an iOS device. You can use it to make little sonic doodles to share with your friends, or just to amuse yourself.

You start with an empty grid, then add lines and shapes to generate sounds, rhythms, and beats. Draw a line across the bottom, grab a circle and drop it straight onto the line. Watch it bounce and make sound – you have created your first arrangement, simple as it may be.

Things get curiouser from there. Then the mixing and matching begins. In our case, we put two lines perpendicular to each other and dropped a triangle, waited a few seconds, and then threw in a few rectangles.

The possibilities quickly add up; like we did, you’ll probably start forming loops where shapes can’t escape, and perform in concert with each other. When you’re done, you can share your creation via SoundCloud, Dropbox, email, or as a straight-up file.

The app comes with six sound banks, a wide range of options from “Sheffield Sound” to “Arcades” which includes the glitchy bleeps and bloops you may expect from such a title.

You can upgrade the sound bank to 16 sounds with a $2 in-app purchase — in fact, that’s the downside to this app. Everything is well-designed, and of a high quality, and it’s easy to use and all that, but most of the great sounds are $2 away, as are many of the more interesting features, like the ability to record a certain motion, which is necessary to create repeating loops, is also $2 away. The full version, with all the extras, costs $4.

Our verdict: The free version is worth playing around with, but just know that if you get hooked, you might have to pay up, because the free version doesn’t offer enough features to create soundscapes worth sharing. If you buy the full version, or at least $2-worth of features, you’ll unlock a music creation device that also acts as moving art that you’ll want to share with your friends.

Here’s the app in action, courtesy of Fingerlab: