An idea on how to improve the block/song feature

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Post 04 May 2024

I love the block/song feature in Reason, it helps simplify the workflow for arrangement and structure and also great for making quick changes in multiple sections.
One thing that bothers me about it though it that when I work on each block, I need to select it from the dropdown and work on it in isolation from the rest of the blocks, which kind of drives me to lose context of the overall flow and patterns.
So while playing with Reason today, I thought about this alternative view, in which all the blocks are exposed on the timeline, and can be changed by visually modifying their lengths.
In addition, this is also make it super easy to copy parts from one block to another.

I quickly mocked it up just for better visualization :D

Curious to know what you think about this!

PS, as a bonus thought, I was also thinking that maybe this can also work directly in the main timeline, so it eliminate the need to go back and forth between two different modes. So all the editing happens in one place. Basically switching different section in the main timeline into blocks and modifying their lengths from there.
Reason blocks 2.jpg
Reason blocks 1.jpg
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Post 04 May 2024

I think I get it, some sort of block rearrangement mode? Great idea!

I’ve also spent time switching between blocks trying to get the parts sorted.
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Post 04 May 2024

I like this idea for a quicker way to edit multiple blocks at the same time. I think the mockup would be clearer if the different blocks used their individual background colour. Maybe you could change this and then pitch the idea to RS via the bug/feedback submission system like I did with my request for a way to layer blocks:
Dear RS, I would love to have the option to layer multiple blocks in the sequencer. This would be very useful as you could have some blocks that hold different melodic content while others hold the drum arrangement, etc.

It could be implemented like this:

1. The block lane is extended to have the option to have multiple sub lanes (just like note lanes for an instrument)
2. The musical content of the blocks are layered on top of each other according to the order they are placed in the different sub lanes
3. parts of a block without a clip act as "transparent" for underlying audio/clips from other blocks while filled parts of a block act opaque and overwrite the lower block (just like the clips in the sequencer do).
4. Clips in the sequencer in song mode still act as the top most layer and thus overwrite any information from blocks.

This implementation should be pretty easy to do while retaining full backwards compatibility.

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Post 15 May 2024

Combining block editing with the main timeline will eliminate the need to switch between two different modes for best results.

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