Rethinking Reflexive Looper for structured pop music

Marchini, Marco and Pachet, François and Carré, Benoît

Proceedings of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression

Reflexive Looper (RL) is a live-looping system which allows a solo musician to incarnate the different roles of a whole rhythm section by looping rhythms, chord progressions, bassline and more. The loop pedal, is still the most used device for those types of performances, accounting for many of the cover songs performances on youtube, but not all kinds of song apply. Unlike a common loop pedal, each layer of sound in RL is produced by an intelligent looping-agent which adapts to the musician and respects given constraints, using constrained optimization. In its original form, RL worked well for jazz guitar improvisation but was unsuited to structured music such as pop songs. In order to bring the system on pop stage, we revisited the system interaction, following the guidelines of professional users who tested it extensively. We describe the revisited system which can accommodate both pop and jazz. Thanks to intuitive pedal interaction and structure-constraints, the new RL deals with pop music and has been already used in several in live concert situations.