You’ve probably already read all about our elation at the functions of the looper in the Axe-Fx II and the perfect integration of the new Looper Control Mode in the MFC-101, but if at the time you were thinking, “Hmm, what is all this looper nonsense anyway?”, then please read on. Equally if you thought, “Looper? I don’t need one of them!”, then again, please read on. You might just find that a looper is actually exactly what you want.
A looper allows you to record a short piece of your playing and then play it back in a continuous loop. This means you can record a rhythm part, press play and solo over the top of it. But that’s not all: you can stack several recordings on top of one another to create the effect of a multi-track recording.
A picture tells a thousand words and moving pictures say even more, so instead of talking about it let’s just take a look at how the wonderful KT Tunstall puts a looper to use when playing live.
TEMPORARY HELP LOOPER
As you can see, loopers aren’t just for techno freaks. You can put them to good use with genuine, home-grown music too. And with a bit of practice you can soon simulate a second guitarist while playing live or cover an otherwise silent change of instrument.
The new Looper Control Mode in Firmware 2.11 or the MFC-101 provides easy access to all the Looper’s options. How about reverse playback of the loop? Or half-speed playback? Of course, you can also record at half speed and play back at full speed. And you can easily swap between two patches while the loop is running, as long as the patches have identically set up Looper blocks.
Of course, the Looper is not only intended for live use, but is also an excellent practice tool. Or do you happen to know a rhythm guitarist who will happily accompany your attempts at soloing for hours on end without getting his timing wrong once? (Not to mention complaining that he’s getting bored...)
Auch zum Songwriting ist der Looper einsetzbar. Man kann schnell mal eben ausprobieren, ob eine bestimmte Melodielinie mit einer Akkordfolge 'funktioniert', ohne erst mühsam den Mehrspur-Recorder anzuwerfen.
Markus Hohmann, who our regular readers will know from his Amp-Match-Tutorial, has recently produced this YouTube video on this topic under the name of 'Jean Midi':
Just try it out. Like Markus. You don’t have to go as far as changing your name, but we’re quite sure you’ll find some uses of your own for it and are even more certain that you’ll have lots of fun on the way there.