Last updated
Developer(s) Alex McLean and others
Initial release2009
Stable release
1.9.4 / 12 March 2023;4 months ago (2023-03-12)
Repository https://github.com/tidalcycles/Tidal/
Written in Haskell
Operating system Linux, macOS, Windows
Type Live coding environment, Algorave
License GPLv3
Website tidalcycles.org

TidalCycles (also known as "Tidal") is a live coding environment which is designed for musical improvisation and composition. In particular, it is a domain-specific language embedded in Haskell, and is focused on the generation and manipulation of audiovisual patterns. [1] [2] [3] It was originally designed for heavily percussive and polyrhythmic grid-based music, but it now uses a flexible and functional reactive representation for patterns, by using rational time. [4] Therefore, Tidal may be applied to a wide range of musical styles, although its cyclic approach to time means that it affords use in repetitive styles such as Algorave. [5]



TidalCycles was created by Alex McLean who also coined the term Algorave, [6] and is a domain-specific language embedded in Haskell, which focuses on the generation and manipulation of audiovisual patterns. [2] Tidal's representation of rhythm is based on metrical cycles, [7] which is inspired by Indian classical music, [8] supporting polyrhythmic and polymetric structures using a flexible, functional reactive representation for patterns, and rational time. This programme doesn't produce sound itself, but via the SuperCollider sound environment through the SuperDirt framework, via MIDI, or Open Sound Control.

Tidal is also used widely in academic research, including representation in music AI, [9] [10] as a language in network music, [11] and in electronic literature. [12]

Tidal is widely used at Algorave algorithmic dance music events, [13] [14] as well as being used on high profile music releases. [15] [16] [17] It has been featured on BBC Radio 3's New Music Show. [18]

Artists using TidalCycles

Related Research Articles

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