|★ APPLICATIONS ★ CREATION MUSICAL ★ MUSIC MASTER|Amstrad Action) ★|
|Music Master||Applications Creation Musical|
This is the software package marketed to go with the Maestro amplifier and speaker system It comes on cassette or disk and loads without difficulty. Unfortunately, once loaded you start to wonder whether it's worth the £16 asked for it.
The screen shows three octaves of keyboard, and when you press a key you can hear the corresponding note. The keyboard can be transposed up and down to cover a full eight octaves and you can select any of six voices for the notes. The six function keys f4 to f9 give you rather poorly enveloped percussion sounds. A foreground track can be laid over one or two background tracks.
All this sounds rather good, until you realise that it's all Music Master can do! You can only lay down notes in real time, and when you've laid down a backing track (which has to be the right length and in perfect tempo) you must then play Che accompaniment and melody line without stopping. I'd be interested to hear of anyone other than a trained musician who can do this without error.
So sophisticated is Music Master that Vanguard doesn't seem to think it needs a manual, printing brief instructions instead on the back of the box. They contain some odd English, suggesting that DataSync, the people who wrote the program, are from abroad. A pity someone at Vanguard couldn't have edited it through.
When you consider that Rainbird's Music System , with which the Music Master is comparable in price, offers a scrolling manuscript display where you can enter music note by note, as well as a keyboard and synthesiser module to create as many voices as you want, you might feel, as I do, that Music Master is vastly over-priced.