Drum Session updated – excellent iOS virtual drummer gets Ableton Link support

Download from iTunes App StoreIf you want the sound of acoustic drums that sound like they are being played by a real human drummer, then we have a number of possible iOS music apps. This list of the most obvious candidates includes the excellent Drum Session, a collaboration between well-known iOS musician Derek Buddemeyer and the Blue Mangoo team (of iFretless fame).

While Drum Session is not quite ‘EZ Drummer in an app’, it certainly has the ubiquitous desktop virtual drummer as its inspiration….  which is certainly not a bad thing. It offers a library of MIDI grooves in a range of different music styles. Equally, the workflow is simple and makes it very easy to  edit and chain together patterns to form a song structure. It perhaps doesn’t (yet at least) offer the ‘build a custom kit’ or in-app kit mixer/effects that the better desktop virtual drummers provide, but it is supplied with a good range of very useable acoustic kits ready to rock with a minimum of fuss. And, as of v.1.1.0, it was also made universal with excellent iPhone support now included.

Drum Session – excellent acoustic drum tracks in a range of music styles and all rather too easy :-)

Technically, you get Audiobus, IAA, MIDI in/out and export options for both MIDI and audio. You can connect the app to an external MIDI keyboard or electronic drum kit to trigger the sounds if you wish. Given that the interface has been made to work so well on the iPhone screen, I wonder whether the development team might consider taking on AU support at some stage soon? That would be a big step forward….

Drum Session now include support for Ableton Link…..

Anyway, it’s an impressive app….  and a further update has appeared today – v.1.1.1 – that does bring one other very welcome technical feature; Ableton Link support. Link has really caught on as a method of tempo sync between iOS music apps and has been widely adopted by the development community. Drum apps are obvious candidates for the technology so it is great that Drum Session now includes the option. Having given the update a quick run out within AUM, and sat alongside Patterning and Blocs Wave, all the apps seemed very happy to lock together tempo-wise and respond to tempo changes. I’ve not done exhaustive testing but it certainly seems pretty solid so far….   all good :-)

…. and this seems to work well making it easy to lock tempos with other Link enabled apps.

The app is currently priced at UK££23.99/US$24.99 and requires iOS9.0 or later. Here’s hoping that the development team can keep pushing forwards (a mixer and AU support would be top of my personal wish list) as Drum Session is already very good and still has plenty of promise to develop. Check out both the promo videos below (the first is a new one showing the iPhone version in action), read the full Drum Session review and then hit the download button to find out more via the App Store.

Drum Session

Download from iTunes App Store



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