Points & Lines is a new standalone software toolbox by Giorgio Sancristoforo for evolving, massive drones & textures with up to 80 oscillators.
Experimental Music Software! Yes, not only hardware instruments can be experimental software too. A fine example is Giorgio Sancristoforo. He is a sound artist but also a developer of exciting, unique music applications for macOS & Windows that always take classic music creation processes in new directions.
Just recently he released Gleetchlab2021, a kind of experimental DAW with which you create glitching soundscapes from any sample content. For his newest development, he goes back to classic synthesis but again with a crazy touch.
Points & Lines
Points & Lines is a new standalone application (macOS/Win) dedicated to experimental music, drones, and sound design. The P&L core uses classic subtractive synthesis divided into four dedicated lines. Each with one synthesis element.
It starts with an oscillator line that features 20 oscillators that can either use classic waveforms or a drawable wavetable. The second features 20 VCAs, the third 20 bandpass filters, Hainbach will be happy, and 20 panners. The exciting thing here is that these lines can be passed through, similar to a DAW when you press play. Instead of audio/MIDI, you playback here pure synthesis.
Sequences or MIDI notes cannot be set here. You generate complex drones that can be made very lively via the timeline playback functionality. This is where the name of the software comes from. You set points and the timeline runs through them. In the oscillator section, the points represent the frequency, in the pan the L/R position, and so on. These parameters change then their values every second or minute, depending on how you have set the points. Thus, you can create very complex, evolving drones.
Up To 80 Oscillators
The software has a built-in recorder that allows you to record multiple layers. More precisely, you can capture up to 3 stereo tracks of 20 oscillators each, and play them along with the live score. This means you can create monster drones and textures with up 80 VCOs, 80VCAs, 80 BPFs, and 80 PAN. And all in constant motion.
For additional sound design flexibility, Points & Lines includes a classic lowpass filter, a reverb processor perfect for fluffy textures, and an LFO for additional movement. There is no option to bounce a total mix of these sources what is a bit of shame. However, each recorder has an export functionality with which you can save your recordings as an audio file.
Packing these four elements (oscillator, filter, VCA, and pan) into a software synth ynthesizer is certainly no rocket science. However, combining them in such a way that they interact musically is something else. Giorgio shows once again that you can develop a highly exciting sound tool from relatively few features. More important is how you combine these features and how to implement them in a music tool. For me, it’s yet another brilliant sound design tool that costs little but is a lot of fun.
Points & Lines by Giorgio Sancristoforo is available now for 16€ and runs as a standalone software on macOS. Be careful, it’s not a VST/AU plugin, please check out the free demo version before buying. The Windows version will be available very soon.
More information here: Giorgio Sancristoforo