Your improvisational companion.
mt.Sev (Mount Sev) is a semi-random arpeggiator-like MIDI mechanism for creating generative music. It’s controllable to a degree but also surprising and unpredictable, forming melodies and chords you may not have otherwise thought to play.
The device makes for a great improvisational companion, providing some musical context for drafting melodies and making sound design decisions. When you just need fast music - for a podcast’s bed music or a film score, for example, or a harmonic layer to a track you’re working on - mt.Sev offers you cohesive, immersive MIDI to work from.
Generate mountains of MIDI.
The heart of the device is the mountain, an XY pad that adjusts the active note distribution across the frequency spectrum. Moving the mountain’s peak left and right determines the octave that all active notes are centered around. Moving up and down on the pad widens and narrows the range possible octaves.
Utilizing multiple note selection banks opens the door to even more creative possibilities. For example, setting up two banks with different scales and then midi-mapping the bank select buttons allows for modulating the backing harmony’s key mid-song. Or you can enter chords into each bank on the fly and use the bank sequencer to create an evolving chord progression.
While the device can fill several different roles in the studio or on stage, mt.Sev’s strength is quickly forming a harmonic canvas upon which the artist can paint their musical themes and sound design. Even when no human collaborators are around, you can always head to the mountain.
The original two Sev patches were designed as complete synths - from the sorta-arp note making, to the sine wave that played them, to effects like delay and detune to modulate it. I loved playing with these but felt limited by the sound generator - what would Sev sound like if it was a piano instead? A square wave? Something completely different? I wanted to answer these questions and set about modifying the patch.
After many wrong turns and strange experiments over the course of several years, the edits resulted in this Max for Live MIDI Device - mt.Sev. I don’t think it’s a replacement for those original patches, just part of their family. You should absolutely try the original out for yourself - it’s a ton of fun and offers a completely different experience than mt.Sev.