Giada is a free sequencer environment for handling your samples and loops. VSTs can be loaded as well. Here´s a demo vid:
Jeskola Buzz is a free modular software music studio environment centered around a modular plugin-based machine view and a multiple pattern sequencer tracker. It´s been around since 2000 and includes lots of plugins. To see/listen what is possible with it, here´s a full production session with it by Roman Buehler:
Last but not least there´s a community forum for Buzz.
Cyan/n is a free Max app for creating sample based compositions by Katsuhiro Chiba. Development has stopped in 2008 but this is still cool. This is what you´ll get: Slicer · Looper · Rhythm box with 4 tracks granular · Multi effect and Master effect etc are integrated and can be processed in real time without stopping performance. The user interface is laid out so that you can quickly access all parameters, and it also supports external MIDI controllers. Site is is japanese.
The Music and Sound Design Platform (also referred to as Music_SDP and MSDP) is free and open-source software built for electronic and electroacoustic music performance, production, improvisation, and experimentation. Music_SDP is a DAPE, or Digital Audio Performance Environment, functioning similarly to a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation), but designed with a special modular structure built for live performances. MSDP provides a non-linear, infinitely expandable, totally hackable, easy-to-use interface for sound design that encourages and rewards exploration and experimentation. It is a great platform for beginners and professionals alike, and provides all the tooling and control needed to make wild new sounds, build complex sonic projects, and execute flawless performances.
Good DAW for a good price – 60$
(You may use the discounted license if:
You are an individual, and REAPER is only for your personal use, or
You are an individual or business using REAPER commercially, and yearly gross revenue does not exceed USD $20,000, or
You are an educational or non-profit organization.)
Sure, VCV Rack is not new and the second post here. But since constantly new versions and modules are being created, here´s a little reminder 😉
Btw, the latest improvent is an unofficial VST patch for fx and instrument use. Installation is a bit of a hassle at the moment though. Support in the KVR forum (Link at the bottom).