Harmonic Polyrhythms

Bounce Metronome Feature:
Pro Version Only

Youtube Video

5:3:2 polyrhythm playing 5th 3rd and 2nd harmonics - the pitches of a major chord tuned to pure harmonics/n (3D bounce inside ovals)

What are they?

Here the idea is that each rhythm gets a pitch depending on the number of beats in the measure. The result is harmonious as it uses the harmonic series.

What can you do?.

With Bounce Metronome Pro, you can have up to sixteen rhythms simultaneously in your polyrhythm.

Each of those rhythms can have any number of beats, and any number of subdivisions of each beat. You can also make the likes of 4/4 : 4/3, and cycles of harmonic polyrhythms.

You can try out all the polyrhythms harmonically like this.

3 : 2 type

Videos - a taste of what you can do with Bounce Metronome Pro.

See also the Cycles tab.

Where do I find it in Bounce Metronome:

Pick ‘Harmonic Polyrhythms’  from the drop-down list in the main window

Do you want to see more of these? See >Video gallery with more videos.

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(tutorial like video, shows it in use, how easy to create a new swing rhythm, lilt, buzz roll)

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4/4 : 4/3

These polyrhythms have measures of different sizes. So the 4/4 and 4/3 (_signature#Irrational_meters" style="font-style: normal; font-size: 11.818181991577148px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; ">'s notation) both have four beats to a measure - but the 4/4 has four beats for every three beats of the 4/3.


Where do I find it in Bounce Metronome:


Maybe as: Pick ‘Harmonic Polyrhythms like 4/4 : 4/3’ from the drop-down menu??

Do you want to see more of these? See >Video gallery with more videos.

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You can play a cycle of different harmonic polyrhythms - any of the harmonic polyrhythms one after another.

Where do I find it in Bounce Metronome:

Pick ‘Cycles of Polyrhythms : 4’ from the drop-down menu

Do you want to see more of these videos? See >Video gallery with more videos.

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ρ : 4

Youtube Video

Golden Ratio (In)Harmonic Polyrhythm Metronome

This shows the most inharmonic possible musical interval (hardest to approximate with a pure ratio) and the most polyrhythmic rhythm (in the same sense). See the youtube video description for details

These have a fractional number of beats to the bar, say 2.2 beats to a measure - or even Π or the golden ratio ρ. The beats drift in and out of phase with the bar line and in the case of Π and ρ the beats never hit the bar line exactly after the first note.

The ones based on the golden ratio are particularly interesting as they combine the "most inharmonic musical interval" with the "most polyrhythmic rhythm".

There "most inharmonic" doesn't mean it is unpleasant sounding. Notes that are slightly "out of tune" with pure harmonics are the ones most likely to jar on the ear. Ones that are as far away from pure harmonics as this can sound pleasant.

What the intervals sound like is also very timbre dependent, especially for the more "xenharmonic" intervals - an interval that sounds wonderful on one instrument may not work at all on another instrument.

You really need a computer to play these rhythms - accurately anyway. For instance with the golden ratio rhythm, then the beats need to almost align at Fibonacci numbers (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, ... where each number is the sum of the previous two in the sequence) -, so for instance 8 beats of the faster rhythm almost coincide with 5 of the slower, then 13 of the faster and 8 of the slower, 21 of the faster and 13 of the slower etc. And they don't exactly align, sometimes the faster rhythm is first and sometimes the slower rhythm, and they align more and more closely the more the rhythm goes on.

It's almost impossible for a human player to keep this sort of thing up consistently without help from a computer. So that's why it requires a computer and a program like Bounce Metronome Pro to explore these rhythms properly.

They are of interest to composers.

As with the other polyrhythms, even more so perhaps, practice with these rhythms can help you develop rhythmic independence.

Where do I find it in Bounce Metronome:

Pick ‘Harmonic Polyrhythms like pi : 4’ from the drop-down menu

Do you want to see more of these? See >Video gallery with more videos.

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Similar idea to Theremin's Rhythmicon. Also similar ideas of polyrhythmic music come up  when you explore the "music of the spheres" attempt at making music based on the orbital periods or rotation periods of the planets etc.

It's also of interest for music therapy and the users of Barbara Hero's Lambdoma keyboard.

For the background of polyrhythms see the tab on the polyrhythms page.

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Who is it for?

Of particular interest to these musicians: Music therapists. Those interested in music of the spheres and related ideas. Composers and others interested in exploring new musical ideas.

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