Time-scale modification (TSM) is the task of speeding up or slowing down an audio signal’s playback speed without changing its pitch. In digital music production, TSM has become an indispensable tool, which is nowadays integrated in a wide range of music production software. Music signals are diverse—they comprise harmonic, percussive, and transient components, among others. Because of this wide range of acoustic and musical characteristics, there is no single TSM method that can cope with all kinds of audio signals equally well. Our main objective is to foster a better understanding of the capabilities and limitations of TSM procedures. To this end, we review fundamental TSM methods, discuss typical challenges, and indicate potential solutions that combine different strategies. In particular, we discuss a fusion approach that involves recent techniques for harmonic-percussive separation along with time-domain and frequency-domain TSM procedures.
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