Welcome back to the Sound Stage. We love music here at Padgadget and have our own resident musicians on staff to tell you about apps and accessories to make your iPad sing. Last week, we took a trip down a groovy memory lane with FunkBox. This week, we are headed back to the same decade with iLectric Piano.
I have a friend that used to have a Wurlitzer in his basement. My band practiced in that same basement and, every week, one of us would sit down behind that mammoth of a music machine and plunk out what ever songs we could figure out until the roommates started to complain.
These days, a lot of people don’t appreciate the subtle beauty of an electric piano like a Wurlitzer. Keyboard synthesizers are a lot of fun, but there is something special about the sound that a vintage Fender Rhodes makes that is hard to reproduce.
That’s why IK Multimedia‘s newest app is so much more awesome than just a keyboard app. The best part is that iLectric Piano is also compatible with my iRig KEYS, so I can relive those magic nights of playing songs on the old Wurly. Looks like I need to get the band back together.
The app includes 19 different vintage electric piano keyboard sounds from EP to Wurly to Clavinets. The sound variations are practically limitless. If the included options aren’t enough for you, you can always upgrade with an additional 22 vintage and modern keyboard sounds through an in-app purchase.
Although each reproduction of the original electric piano sound is nearly perfect and doesn’t require any tweaking, IK Multimedia knows that we like to fiddle with our instruments to make them our own. That’s why they’ve included tweakable knobs.
Each piano can be fine tuned with volume control, mid, low, and high adjustments, reverb and overdrive changes, and modulation variations, including Chorus, Phaser, Flanger, Tremelo, and AutoPan.
Once you’ve picked the piano you want to use and fine tune it to fit your personality, you can record your inspirations right from within the app. To record a song, tap the Staff icon at the top of the screen. When you see the list of sample songs, tap the “New” tab right above the keyboard. When you are ready, tap the red dot with the word “Record” above it.
You can set a metronome and adjust the tempo, or play with your own rhythm. There is an overdub feature that lets you layer over the original recording as many times as you like. You can also send your new song to bandmates through email or export it to your computer through iTunes file sharing.
This app can be played as-is with the built-in keyboard, or by plugging in your iRig KEYS for a fuller keyboard experience. It is also compatible with any core MIDI device, so you can turn just about any keyboard synthesizer into a vintage electric piano.
iLectric Piano costs $19.99 and is available today in the App Store.