Make music from anything with Yellofier

Yellofier is a new iOS app from Swiss electronic band Yello. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store, with no additional in-app purchases.

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Yellofier is an app designed to allow users to create “glitchy” electronic music using any sounds they like — and to make the music creation process extremely simple and straighforward, even for those who have not used music creation software before. It succeeds admirably in that goal, allowing for the quick and easy creation of some convincing-sounding electronic music, and then for those creations to be shared with the world via various means.

Using Yellofier involves several steps. Firstly, the recorder part of the app allows the user to record any sound they please. This will then be automatically “sliced” into eight pieces, each of which is color-coded. The exact size and length of these slices may be manually adjusted if desired or if the automatic slicing does not work well, but generally speaking for rhythmic sounds, the app does a good job of determining sensible points to cut the complete sound into smaller samples.

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Once sounds have been recorded, they can be arranged on a four-track grid, each cell of which houses four beats further subdivided into four sixteenth notes. Each of these sixteenth notes can have a sample assigned to it simply by tapping the appropriate color and assigning it to the grid, and a special effect can be applied by also choosing a pattern to overlay on top of the color. The arrangement screen doesn’t allow the different sounds to be previewed, however, so it’s up to the user to either remember what the different colors meant or to just experiment — the way the rest of the app is set up suggests that experimentation is both encouraged and embraced rather than attempting to create something with a more rigidly-defined structure.

On the arrangement grid, the user may also import sounds from the included Yello Sound Library, which include samples created by Yello member Boris Blank. In this manner, a variety of different samples can be layered atop each other to create some interesting-sounding pieces of music. The tempo of the mix can also be adjusted via an option in the upper-right corner of the screen.

When a mix has been completed, it can be saved for later retrieval — a selection of example mixes is provided with the app — or shared in various ways. The song file may be sent to someone via email, which means it can be opened in Yellofier on another device, or the sound file can be exported and sent as an m4a file to another user or yourself. Alternatively, the sound file can be exported to Soundcloud, the popular Audioshare iOS app, or via iTunes File Sharing. Optionally, when exporting the song, the user can request that the app make the resulting mix suitable for looping, which makes Yellofier an excellent tool for those who want to compose small, simple samples on the go and then bring those samples into a more fully-featured digital audio workstation solution when they are sat at their computer.

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Yellofier is an excellent app and all the more noteworthy for being completely free to use. It’s simple and intuitive to navigate, and even those unfamiliar with digital music creation will be able to get up and running with it remarkably quickly. It’s well worth a download for those who enjoy creativity, and is a great addition to the already-formidable lineup of music creation software available for iOS. It’s also a good example of a great way to get an artist’s “brand” out there without being overly-obtrusive about it — users who enjoy creating music with Yellofier may just find themselves inspired to check out Yello’s work elsewhere.

You can follow Yellofier’s progress with AppData, our tracking service for mobile and social apps and developers.