HEAP MIDI Tools One for Ableton: Elevate Rhythmic Creativity

Introduction to HEAP MIDI Tools One

HEAP MIDI Tools One by Heaps of Bleeps is an innovative pack designed to revolutionize your approach to rhythmic creativity in Ableton Live. This collection offers six unique MIDI transformation tools, each built to help you explore unconventional rhythmic patterns and break away from traditional grid-based composition. Whether you are looking to experiment with polyrhythms, polymeters, or generative sequences, HEAP MIDI Tools One provides the means to do so with precision and ease.

Developed specifically for Ableton Live 12 and requiring MaxforLive, these tools operate seamlessly within your existing setup, enabling you to breathe new life into your music production workflow. The suite includes tools like Weird Quantizer, Weird Swing, Weird Duration, Weird Shifter, Clip Manip, and Fractional Stretch, each offering distinct capabilities to manipulate MIDI data in ways not possible with standard tools.

Weird Quantizer allows you to align your MIDI notes to unconventional rhythmic grids, making it easy to create off-kilter beats that stand out. Weird Swing introduces unique swing patterns to your polyrhythmic and polymetric compositions, providing a fresh twist on traditional swing values. Weird Duration lets you set fixed note durations based on complex rhythmic grids, facilitating more intricate and controlled rhythmic patterns. Weird Shifter offers an intuitive method to nudge notes along non-standard grids, simplifying the process of creating intricate rhythms. Clip Manip leverages various algorithms to generate new musical variations from your existing material, while Fractional Stretch enables precise stretching of MIDI notes by fractional amounts, expanding your control over tempo and time signatures.

Ideal for musicians and producers seeking to push the boundaries of rhythmic creativity, HEAP MIDI Tools One integrates effortlessly into Ableton Live, offering robust tools for generating new ideas and unlocking untapped musical potential. This pack is perfect for anyone looking to explore the avant-garde side of music production and inject fresh, innovative rhythms into their projects.

Exploring Weird Quantizer

Weird Quantizer takes the concept of MIDI quantization and turns it on its head by allowing users to quantize MIDI notes to unconventional rhythmic grids. This tool excels at innovating off-tempo and experimental beats that defy traditional timing structures. Whereas conventional quantizers align notes to strict, predictable divisions of time, Weird Quantizer embraces the chaotic potential of polyrhythmic and polymetric timing. Users can adjust settings such as the quantize amount parameter to smoothly transition between different rhythmic grids, making it possible to generate dynamically evolving patterns. This offers an exciting playground for experimenting with nuanced beat structures and aligning your compositions with intricate time signatures. By facilitating the creation of rhythms that feel organic and unexpected, this tool aids in breaking out of monotonous patterns and exploring new territories in music production.

Unconventional Rhythms with Weird Swing

Weird Swing takes the concept of traditional swing and reimagines it through the lens of polyrhythmic and non-dyadic note values. While typical swing shifts notes to create a laid-back feel, Weird Swing manipulates notes in a much wider array of intervals, offering fresh and unorthodox rhythmic variations. It does so by redefining the anchors of swing, allowing for the stretching and compressing of MIDI notes between these new anchors. This creates rhythms that not only diverge from conventional swing but can also resemble entirely novel metric frameworks.

Using linear or exponential curves, Weird Swing can alter the timing in ways that introduce unpredictability and complexity, giving a distinctive character to your tracks. Musicians looking to explore outside the norms of standard time signatures will find this tool invaluable for generating grooves that feel uniquely dynamic and non-standard. With Weird Swing, the emphasis shifts to embracing irregular temporal patterns, making it easier to craft beats that sound less mechanical and more organically diverse. This tool provides ample opportunities to venture into avant-garde rhythmic territories, thus broadening the creative possibilities in your music production.

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Advanced Durations with Weird Duration

Weird Duration offers an innovative way to handle note lengths by adhering to complex rhythmic grids. With this tool, you can automatically set MIDI notes' durations according to polyrhythmic, polymetric, and non-dyadic time values. This ensures that your compositions sync perfectly with the unique time values set by the other devices in this bundle, enhancing overall cohesiveness.

In practice, Weird Duration simplifies a usually labor-intensive task. Instead of manually adjusting each note to match unconventional grids, this tool automates that process, saving significant time and reducing errors. Furthermore, it enables precise control over how long each note lasts, whether your focus is on experimental rhythms or just adding a touch of the unexpected to a conventional beat.

This tool is especially beneficial for those exploring genres that rely heavily on intricate timing and varied note lengths, such as progressive electronic music or complex jazz compositions. Musicians can thus seamlessly integrate these non-standard rhythmic elements into their tracks, creating a more engaging and dynamic musical experience.

Weird Duration's interface is user-friendly, allowing real-time adjustments and quick experimentation. Producers can directly manipulate the note duration parameters to find the perfect balance, ensuring that every beat maintains its intended impact without disrupting the overall flow of the track. By incorporating this tool into your workflow, you can achieve new rhythmic textures and intricately detailed note patterns that would be challenging to create manually.

Effortless Edits Using Weird Shifter

Weird Shifter is a powerful tool that redefines how you can manipulate MIDI notes on non-standard grids. It excels in shifting notes along polyrhythmic, polymetric, and tuplet structures, allowing for effortlessly complex and innovative rhythms. Imagine needing to adjust the placement of a series of notes within a beat structure that doesn’t conform to traditional 4/4 timing. Instead of painstakingly moving each note manually, Weird Shifter lets you do this with precision across various rhythmic grids. This not only saves valuable time but also ensures accuracy and rhythmic coherence.

The magic of Weird Shifter lies in its ability to make micro-adjustments while maintaining the feel of the composition. Whether you're working within the confines of a traditional drum pattern or exploring more avant-garde musical ideas, this tool allows every note to snap perfectly into place according to the grid you’ve configured. This functionality turns what could be an arduous editing process into a seamless experience.

By working in tandem with HEAP MIDI Tools One’s other devices, Weird Shifter complements tools such as Weird Quantizer and Weird Swing, ensuring that every rhythmic change integrates smoothly with your existing MIDI tracks. This results in edits that are not only easier to execute but also more adventurous and creative than possible through manual MIDI editing methods.

In essence, Weird Shifter is an indispensable tool for any music producer looking to delve into intricate rhythmic patterns without the headache of manual adjustments. Its intuitive design and compatibility with non-traditional timing systems make it a favorite among those keen on pushing the boundaries of rhythmic creativity.

Enhanced Variations with Clip Manip

Clip Manip is an essential tool for generating new musical variations while preserving the original rhythmic structure of your MIDI clips. By utilizing a range of algorithms like Scramble for randomizing values, Rotate for altering parameter values forward or backward, and Reverse for flipping values, Clip Manip allows you to transform the pitch, velocity, duration, and other parameters of your MIDI notes effortlessly. It also offers options such as Sort, which organizes values from low to high or vice versa, and Cut and Shuffle, which can create intricate rhythmic patterns by slicing and rearranging MIDI notes.

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Whether you seek to refresh an existing composition with subtle changes or completely overhaul your MIDI structure, Clip Manip provides the flexibility needed to tailor your workflow. This tool not only encourages experimentation but also ensures that your rhythmic ideas stay cohesive. By keeping the foundational rhythm intact and altering other parameters, you can produce a wide array of complex, engaging musical outcomes.

Moreover, the ability to adjust probabilities and various velocities increases the dynamic range of your compositions, contributing to a more nuanced and expressive musical output. This level of control is particularly beneficial for those working with generative or algorithmic music, where unpredictability and variation are key components.

In essence, Clip Manip is a versatile tool that empowers music producers to delve into deeper levels of rhythmic and melodic creativity. It enables effortless manipulation of MIDI notes, fostering innovative results that can elevate your music production to new heights.

Fractional Stretch: Beyond Basic BPM Shifts

Stepping beyond traditional BPM shifts, Fractional Stretch offers a revolutionary approach to manipulating MIDI within Ableton Live 12. This tool allows users to stretch MIDI sequences by fractional amounts and wider decimal values, providing unprecedented flexibility in rhythmic design. Traditional BPM shifts typically constrain musicians to whole-number increments, limiting the ability to explore nuanced rhythmic variations.

Fractional Stretch breaks this boundary, enabling finely tuned adjustments that can align perfectly with polyrhythmic and polytempic elements. For instance, while a basic BPM shift might adjust a track from 120 BPM to 130 BPM, Fractional Stretch can make more precise changes such as stretching a 4/4 beat by 4.7% to create complex overlapping rhythms. This level of control is essential for genres that thrive on intricate rhythm structures, such as experimental electronic music and jazz fusion.

Moreover, this tool promotes creative exploration by allowing MIDI to be stretched to fit within unorthodox time signatures. This means that even simple loops can be morphed into dynamic, evolving patterns that challenge conventional rhythmic boundaries. Fractional Stretch also integrates seamlessly with the other HEAP MIDI transformation tools, offering compatibility with the unique grids and time values set by devices like Weird Quantizer and Weird Swing.

Users can expect to generate rhythms that would be nearly impossible to achieve through manual adjustments alone. Utilizing this tool not only ensures more precise control over rhythmic variations but can also serve as a source of inspiration, presenting new musical ideas and patterns that can lead to innovative compositions. In short, Fractional Stretch transforms a fundamental aspect of MIDI manipulation into a canvas for creative experimentation.

Installation Guide for HEAP MIDI Tools One

To install HEAP MIDI Tools One, first download the ZIP archive from the seller's website. After the download is complete, double-click the ZIP file to decompress it, which will create a HEAP MIDI Tools folder on your computer. Open Ableton Live 12 and navigate to the User Library section within the Places panel of the Live Browser. If you don't already have an organized folder system, it's a good idea to create two subfolders named Generators and Transformers within your User Library for better file management.

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Next, locate the decompressed HEAP MIDI Tools folder and find the individual tool files within. Drag the tools categorized as Generators into the Generators subfolder, and those categorized as Transformers into the Transformers subfolder. Ableton Live will recognize these files and add them to the appropriate dropdown menus in the Generator and Transformer tabs of the MIDI Clip Note Editor.

Please note that these tools cannot be directly dragged onto MIDI tracks. Instead, they must be loaded from within the Note Editor of a MIDI clip. Once installed, the tools will be ready for use, allowing you to transform and experiment with your MIDI sequences in innovative and creative ways.

If you encounter any issues during installation, make sure that your version of Ableton Live is updated to version 12 and that MaxforLive is properly installed and activated. Both are required for the HEAP MIDI Tools One to function correctly.

Compatibility and Requirements

When considering the compatibility and requirements for using HEAP MIDI Tools One, it is essential to ensure that your system meets specific criteria. The toolset is designed exclusively for use with Ableton Live 12 Suite or Ableton Live 12 Standard, provided that MaxforLive is installed. This makes MaxforLive an indispensable component for the proper functionality of HEAP MIDI Tools One.

Operating system compatibility covers both macOS and Windows platforms, ensuring flexibility for users across different systems. The primary requirement is running Ableton Live 12, as earlier versions of Ableton Live do not support these advanced MIDI transformation tools.

Aside from software specifics, users need sufficient computer hardware to support the computational demands of Ableton Live 12 and MaxforLive when processing complex polyrhythms and generative patterns. This typically means having at least 8GB of RAM and a multi-core processor to handle the intensive MIDI manipulations and real-time adjustments that these tools facilitate.

In summary, to fully utilize HEAP MIDI Tools One, ensure your system adheres to these requirements: Ableton Live 12 Suite or Standard with MaxforLive, operating on either macOS or Windows, and robust hardware capable of managing demanding music production tasks. This preparation will enable you to explore the full range of rhythmic and melodic possibilities offered by HEAP MIDI Tools One without technical interruptions.


In conclusion, HEAP MIDI Tools One brings a groundbreaking approach to rhythmic creativity for Ableton Live users. With its suite of six transformational MIDI tools, musicians now have the opportunity to explore polyrhythmic, polymetric, and generative patterns in ways that were previously difficult to achieve. Each tool, from Weird Quantizer to Fractional Stretch, offers its unique method for modifying and enriching your MIDI tracks. Whether you're looking to create unconventional beats, unique swing grooves, or advanced note durations, this toolset is designed to push the boundaries of traditional music production. By integrating HEAP MIDI Tools One into your workflow, you unlock a new level of rhythmic diversity and innovation that's sure to inspire fresh musical ideas. For anyone committed to enhancing their rhythm and MIDI manipulation in Ableton Live, this collection is an indispensable resource. With easy installation and broad compatibility, there's no barrier to diving into the creative potential offered by HEAP MIDI Tools One.

Useful Links

HEAP MIDI Tools One by Heaps of Bleeps on Isotonik Studios

Ableton Live 12 Official Page