An Interview with Ícaro Ferre


    Ícaro, thanks for being interviewed. Can you give us a brief overview of what is in the "Gen CV Tools" package that has just been released?
    Hi Darwin! Thanks for the opportunity. The Gen CV Tools is a collection of gen~ patches (Shift Register, Clock Divider & Modifier and Complex LFO) that are focused on generating different kinds of modulation signals to control analog and modular synthesizers.
    Are these just for modular synthesizers, or with they work with other hardware (or even other software)?
    They can definitely be used for other applications depending on how the user implements them. The gen~ patches output audio signals (usually 0-1 or +/- 1) which can used for controlling other MSP objects or even BEAP modules however the user can easily transform these signals into MIDI with the help of some other Max objects.
    As a matter of fact, the package includes some examples using these gen~ patches together with some MSP objects.
    One of the things that I like working with is your Complex LFO. I notice from your other work (particularly the CV Toolkit application) that you seem to gravitate toward interesting LFOs. What is it that you find so interesting?
    I find it interesting how there are many oscillator modules with built-in wave-folders and wave-shapers however most LFO modules are usually very simple (not to say boring). Two modules that really opened my eyes to the possibility of creating more interesting LFOs were the Mutable Instruments Tides and the VBrazil MultiLFO (which was even ported to CV Toolkit as a virtual module).
    I believe synthesis is not only about sound but also about movement, and complex LFOs are often a good way to add different kinds of movements to synth patches.
    As for the Complex LFO included in this package, it can not only be used for generating smooth modulation signals but it can also for creating interesting sequences because of it’s Degrade (bit-crusher) feature.
    These tools, given the name, are obviously created using Gen. Why did you decide to use Gen, and what benefits did you find working in that environment?
    Most of the virtual modules available in CV Toolkit and many of my Max for Live devices were created using gen~ so I got really used to working with it.
    While I really enjoy being able to control what’s going on inside the patch sample-by-sample, I also really enjoy having access to Codebox and being able to export the code (which is a feature I’m planning on exploring more deeply in the near future).
    So I'm curious: what's next up for you? More Max for Live, more standalone applications - or something else?
    My goal these days is to continue to improve upon my existing projects, especially CV Toolkit. For example, I’m about to release a new update for CV Toolkit which will include many new features that users have been requesting.
    I do have some new projects I’ve been working on that will focus on the other side of hardware synthesizers however it might be too early to talk about them.