Relic Waves, Alexander Zolotov’s new fascinating app (iOS/Android), lets you generate four billion unique lo-fi sounds (pads, effects, etc.).
There are hundreds of music apps on iOS. As with plugins, some just stand out or stay in your memory. For me, this includes apps like Animoog, Elastic Drums, iceGear synths, or Fractal Bits from Alexander Zolotov.
The latter is a fascinating, simple app that allows you to generate millions of glitch drums and percussive sounds using a math-based algorithm. An endless sound treasure for every sampler. Alexander is now continuing this great idea in a second app. This time with pads and effects.
Relic Waves is based on the same unique concept as Fractal Bits. It’s all about generating new sounds using a new engine powered by an algorithm. According to Alexander Zolotov, you can create four billion random pads and effects.
This time, the focus is on crazy Lo-Fi sounds that are crackling, dirty, etc.
As with Fractal Bits, sounds can be generated with a touch. Once done, a grid is created with a set of 12 sounds that correspond to a code of 8 characters. You can also search for new sounds using three buttons: next random set, edit code, and previous set.
The ability to adapt the 8-character code is a highlight of the app. This way, you can dive even deeper than just constantly pressing the random button.
Then, like in Fractal Bits, you can modify each generated sound with six additional MIDI-controllable processing parameters: volume, transpose, stereo, reverb, echo, and envelope. You can play these sounds using the on-screen buttons, a PC keyboard, or a MIDI controller like a pad or keyboard.
I always recommend Fractal Bits to musicians as an almost endless sound box for hardware and software samplers. For me, this is also the case with Relic Waves. Thanks to its internal 32-bit recorder and function to export individual sounds as WAV files, you can feed your samplers with tons of sounds.
There is also an export function to SunVox that gives you the samples and effects in a file. Plus, you can share your sounds as text so others can re-generate them.
Another great functionality is the ability to freeze individual pads. So they will not change during the randomization process. And don’t forget that the app also works as an AUv3 plugin on iOS, allowing you to use multiple instances of the app.
As a big fan of Fractal Bits, I am glad that the concept of this app has taken further to other sounds in its new app. Anyone who loves the first will surely love Relic Waves just as much. It’s a must-have app if you’re looking for new glitchy, lo-fi sounds for samplers like an Elektron Digitakt or others.
Relic Waves by Alexander Zolotov is available now for $1.99 on the Apple AppStore (iOS/macOS) and Google Play Store (Android).