Novation Circuit Live Polyrhythm Performance Tutorial

Canadian percussionist Ken Shorley shared this video tutorial that looks at live performance with the Novation Circuit’s new polyrhythm support. 

The latest Novation Circuit update brings a new pattern-length parameter for the drum tracks. This lets you create drum sequences that are anywhere from 1-16 steps, so you can create patterns that cycle against each other, creating cross-rhythms.

Shorley demonstrates how you can ‘jump’ in and out of these cross-rhythms while performing, do it in time and begin and end with two different patterns in sequence. Shorley shows how the shorter pattern will always cycle to be in sync with the longer pattern once it has repeated 16 times (or the length of the longer pattern). If the shorter pattern’s length is a divisor of the longer pattern’s length, it will also re-sync after smaller numbers of repetitions.

9 thoughts on “Novation Circuit Live Polyrhythm Performance Tutorial

  1. Oh nice! This is the feature (or lack thereof) that kept me from picking up the circuit, nice to see it in there!

  2. My first roommate after college was a pretty accomplished drummer. He explained to me that the way he played 5/4 was to sing a familiar 4/4 song to himself and then add a curse every four beats.

    1. Thanks for the distinction between “polyrhythmic” and “polymetric”. One can program polyrhythms on any sequencer, but the ability to have concurrent sequences running at different meters is more rare.

    1. Where are different types of polyrhythms. This lets you do things like run 6/8 on one sequence and 4/4 on the other.

      I think the coolest thing about this demo, though, is how he shows that it’s pretty easy to smoothly jump in and out of different meters on the different sequences.

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