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View Full Version : Athena CL - text-based music composition



nomos
10-04-2006, 02:59 PM
Has anyone come across this software, or maybe used it? It was sent my way through a project that I'm working on and from what I gather, it's a largely text-based tool for building musical compositions for websites and maybe other applications. I'm not sure what to make of this yet so I was curious if anyone here had had a go at it. It's free if you want to give it a try (mac, win, unix - blurb below).

It looks bloody complicated though...

http://www.flexatone.net/images/screen/macScrn.jpg

:confused:

"The athenaCL system is an open-source, object-oriented composition tool written in Python. The system can be scripted and embedded, and includes integrated instrument libraries, post-tonal and microtonal pitch modeling tools, multiple-format graphical outputs, and musical output in Csound, MIDI, audio file, XML, and text formats.

Musical parts are deployed as Textures, layered surface-defining objects containing numerous independent ParameterObjects to control pitch, tempo, rhythm, amplitude, panning, and instrument (Csound) parameters. The system includes an integrated library of Csound instruments, and supports output for external Csound instruments, MIDI, and a variety of alternative formats. Over sixty specialized Generator, Rhythm, and Filter ParameterObjects provide tools for stochastic, chaotic, markov-based, wave-form, fractional noise (1/f), genetic, Xenakis sieve..."

:o

adruu
10-04-2006, 04:51 PM
xenakis seive? thats my hotmail password!!!! lol..j/k

this looks like fun. going to have to post up some results after i get the hang of it.

isn't this what maxMSP is also? command line music programming?

nomos
10-04-2006, 06:34 PM
adruu - if you make something with this i'd love to hear it.

i haven't played with max/msp much but i think the appeal is that it's a graphical, objecct-based language. so you have little boxes that represent formulae and functions, but you literally stack them and draw the connection between each.

this athena thingy reminds of a vector art program that was all based numerical equations i think. like illustrator but without a GUI basically, just numbers. though athena does have pictures.

anyway, keep me posted if you try it out. i'll do the same if we use it for anything.

geto.blast
11-04-2006, 04:31 PM
is this related to csound? do you have a download link?

nomos
11-04-2006, 04:53 PM
oh right... http://www.flexatone.net/athena.html

it seems separate from c-sound but capable of incorporating it

borderpolice
11-04-2006, 05:00 PM
is this related to csound? do you have a download link?

is csound in fact being used in the production of what may loosely be termed pop music, or is it strictly avantgarde, CS bod type stuff?

I like the concept, but can never be arsed to install it. would be great if there was a VST/AU frontend.

maybe it exists already?

geto.blast
11-04-2006, 06:17 PM
csound is programing language based on the "C" language.

its mostly used by university types , its all based on txt files and what not.

pass unless you re interested in the science of synthesis.

borderpolice
12-04-2006, 12:38 PM
csound is programing language based on the "C" language.

its mostly used by university types , its all based on txt files and what not.

pass unless you re interested in the science of synthesis.

i'm in fact very interested in sound synthesis. one of the reasons i have not
actually written VST plug-ins is that i'm a bit too lazy for also dealing with
the supporting infrastructure, like GUIs. If i could just write Csound or Athena CL
code and plug it into something that will work with logic audio, that would be
phantastic.

geto.blast
12-04-2006, 07:21 PM
Border forget csound , if you want to dabble in VST/DX plugin' makin' i d reccomend http://www.synthedit.com/ synthedit. You don t need any programming skills with synthedit.

think of it as Reaktor "light" with a "save as VST" option

borderpolice
14-04-2006, 02:44 PM
Border forget csound , if you want to dabble in VST/DX plugin' makin' i d reccomend http://www.synthedit.com/ synthedit. You don t need any programming skills with synthedit.

think of it as Reaktor "light" with a "save as VST" option

cool thanks! i do have shitloads of programming skillz though, just not the time to bother
with GUIs and annoying bureaucracy like that!

michael
15-04-2006, 12:35 AM
I've seen C-Sound run as a VST on a friend's PC, so there are definitely free VST wrappers for Windows. I can't tell you any more than that, but if you're using Windows and would like me to ask, it's no problem.

I think you can get an AU equivalent, which is what Mac apps are tending towards now, aren't they?

There are also standalone front-ends for Mac/Windows/various UNIX flavours, but I tend to agree the appeal would be in slapping the thing inside your favourite plugin host.

I've never ventured into this kind of stuff, from what friends tell me the sounds you can get from things like this (including MAX/MSP) are not so far from what you can do with judicious use of many plugins and the various modular playgrounds like Synthedit, Bidule and Audiomulch. The benefits seem to be more about performance / composition angle of things - creating little systems that feed on other information (eg. the volume of this sound modifies the likelihood of a note change on this other one) or methods for manipulating sound in real time for a performance environment. That's how bods like.. I dunno.. do people know Loscil, Greg Davis or Keith Fullerton Whitman / Hrvatski?

I'm quite happy with painstakingly mapping and sequencing shit. :D

borderpolice
15-04-2006, 05:04 PM
cool, thanks michael. i'm using a mac, so i shall be looking for AU plugins.

i dont think i'd be doing this to improve my music making directly. more
to gain an understanding of how the synthesis works. for that programming
is really good in my experience.