Mad for Mods

So while I wait for the results of extensive tests on the iMac G5, I'm working on the office eMac which I brought home for the interim. It has only the base set of apps for work installed - and no music software.

<whisper>You could always play the guitar Jim</whisper>

But then, while doing some research for work, I stumbled across a reference to Player Pro which, it appeared, was now open source freeware.

I bought Player Pro years ago when I was wrestling with techniques for delivering high quality music audio in tiny file sizes. It used the software techniques developed previously by the 'soundtrackers' which started out on the Amiga. A combination of tiny samples, tight pattern sequencing and four 'tracks' meant very small files (.mad or .mod mostly) which could sound really big.

Anyway, I never really got to grips with it, so I was fascinated to see that development had continued into MacOS X. I had to download it to see what changes might have been made.

<whisper>You could always play the guitar Jim</whisper>

Well! Nostalgia rush or wot! The interface doesn't seem to have changed much although it seems to make more sense to me this time round, but the demo tunes... Ouch!

They're full of energy and humour and sparkle. And when they're cheesy, they're just as good. This stuff was just as important as punk was in its time, just as DIY and just as influential.

Here's a sample: the 30 second intro to a 2m 42s track called Aryx by one K. Kloch made in 1995. The .mad file for the whole track is 64k. This 30s mp3 version of the intro is 484k.


I'm sorry, but I still love a good 4-to-the-floor kick drum. Brilliant!

<whisper>You could always play the guit-

<smack />

Try playing that on the guitar.

Oh, if you want to experiment for yourself - Player Pro on SourceForge