Benn Jordan road-tests his Tesla’s built-in music-making software: “I’m never opening this app again”

If you were to put together a list of things that you’re never going to need, a DAW built into your car could easily be positioned towards the top of it. However, that hasn’t stopped Tesla from creating a music-making app, known as Trax, so producer and musician Benn Jordan decided to take it for a spin.

It turns out that Jordan is the not-particularly-proud owner of a Tesla Model Y. “I am not a Tesla evangelist,” he says, before justifying his decision to buy one by saying that “my like for not driving an internal combustion engine is higher than my dislike for Elon Musk”.

With that out of the way, Jordan drops himself into the driving seat and starts creating a beat. His first criticism is that the hi-hat in the TR-808 kit he’s using doesn’t have any mute groups, meaning that the open hat doesn’t close when the closed one triggers.

That being said, creating a beat does appear to be pretty simple, but Jordan is less than impressed with the software’s built-in instrument sounds, comparing them to the stock General MIDI patches that you’d find in keyboards, soundcards and modules from the the ‘80s and ‘90s. There are also beat patterns in a variety of genres.

Further fun can be had in the piano roll, but it appears that Trax crashed while Jordan was using this. He does manage to create a track in the end, but despite this relative success, he concludes by saying: “I’m never opening this app again”.

Of course, as Jordan points out, the software isn’t designed for professional music production - its only purpose is to keep you entertained while you wait for your Tesla to charge. Like many features of his car, though, he describes it as an “unnecessary novelty”, and one that he won’t be returning to.

Jordan isn’t the first person to document their experiences of using Trax on YouTube - check out some previous efforts below.


The Hyphenate

L Dre

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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