Harmony is a difficult and complex part of music theory with chord spelling and construction at its very basis. What is a chord? Is it C - E - G# or C - E - Ab? You like the sound of those four notes on your guitar, but is it a chord? And if so, what is it called? These are typical issues facing the creative musician when trying to bring a new song to paper. Music theory is often complex and correctly spelling a chord that may have sharps and flats, double flats or double sharps is not always easy. This is where the traditional chord books and apps become useless and ChordLab steps in.
ChordLab differs in its top to bottom approach that begins with a basic chord form which can then be put through permutations like inversions and different voicings. It features all the standard voicings commonly used in Jazz, Rock, Pop, and elsewhere. In that sense it serves as a color palette or sounding board that automatically generates valid fingerings for the piano and guitar in addition to the correct music notation. The result is a much deeper and better understanding of the underlying principles of harmony.
The chord analysis feature in ChordLab allows you to input 3 or 4 notes to determine their harmonic quality. ChordLab will always find the enharmonically simplest solution and does not require you do know whether a note is called G# or an Ab. C-Gb-Bb-D for example will resolve to a D aug7 chord with a correct spelling of C-F#-A#-D. This is especially useful for guitarists that seldomly encounter chords in root position due to the tuning of the instrument.
Another essential tool found in ChordLab is the Circle of Fifths which is implemented interactively. It not only allows to look up key signatures for major and minor, but all major modes like dorian, phrygian, etc. Additionally ChordLab displays degree structures for a key in standard Roman numerals. This is extremely useful when putting together chord progressions.
ChordLab addresses the needs of a somewhat advanced audience with a sharp focus on elementary areas like chord spelling, voice leading, four-part reduction and similar topics that are so essential to many modern music styles. By simultaneously addressing both main harmony instruments in modern music it also becomes an invaluable tool to the composer/arranger of today that needs to evaluate the playability of certain voicings. In short, ChordLab goes far beyond the generic chord app that only aims to show a diagram or two. While providing valuable fingering information - albeit in a context firmly based in theory - with its included interactive circle of fifths, chord finder, rating system, history, tunings adaptation and so many other features, ChordLab is the one harmony tool one finds oneself coming back to again and again.
Chord spelling for all common chords found in fake books
Music notation and textual representation of chord tones
Chord analysis to correctly identify triads and seventh chords
Alto, bass, tenor, treble clefs, TAB and grand staff
All possible inversions
All standard voicings
All common open and alternate tunings presets (guitar)
Alternate fingerings (guitar)
Virtual piano and guitar instruments
Chord tone labeling in instrument views
Automatic reduction to 3 or 4 voices
Automatic root and fifth substitution
Key signatures for all major modes (circle of fifths)
Degree structure in Roman numerals for all major modes (circle of fifths)
Support for left-handed players
High quality guitar and piano samples
European and American chord notation
Arpeggiated and block chord playback
Support for sound libraries
Support for 4" screen
High resolution graphics for Retina®
Academic discounts available
For more screenshots and several videos of the application in action, please visit the website indicated below.
This version includes several general updates and improves support for iOS 11.
Ratings and Reviews
The chord finder feature alone would be worth the price of admission. I can't count the number of times I have been wrecking my brain to figure out a chord I found on the guitar so I could write it down somewhere. The other thing is that I actually needed something for piano and guitar. Also the circle of fifths is very cool. You definitely want to get this if you're into anything like alternative or jazz or want to move past power chords.
A little sorry I paid $10. I have other chord programs and for some reason I thought it would show more than four notes per chord. (I should have read the fine print. Example...it would be nice to see all the notes in an 11th or 13th. Also, there seems to be no logic on the keyboard that let's you choose four notes for a chord. When you press a new key, it's hard to tell which note is going to go away. A least the circle of fifths part was okay.
I fixed the problem noted below by deleting and reinstalling. This is a really wonderful program. Great asset when sitting at piano without having to goto a computer.
- Arthur Roolfs
- 27.8 MB
- Requires iOS 10.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
- English, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Spanish, Swedish
- Age Rating
- Rated 4+
- © 2009 RoGame Software
- In-App Purchases
- 02 Guitar Pack $0.99
- 01 Keyboard Pack $0.99
- 03 Bass Pack $0.99
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.