Robo Instrument Plays Algorithmic Bell Music

Sunday Synth Jam: Composer and maker Sarah Angliss creates compositions for musical automata, of her own design, using Max/MSP, Supercollider, PRAAT and other tools.

This video captures a performance by the Ealing Feader – an musical automata that plays bells. In the video, the instrument plays an algorithmic composition.

Here’s what Angliss has to say about it: Continue reading

Behind The Scenes With Squarepusher’s Music Robots

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This video, embedded below, takes a behind the scenes look at Squarepusher’s music robots, the Z-Machines, which are featured on his latest EP. 

For me there has always been something fascinating about the encounter of the unfamiliar with the familiar”, notes Squarepusher. “I have long been an advocate of taking fresh approaches to existing instrumentation as much as I am an advocate of trying to develop new instruments, and being able to rethink the way in which, for example, an electric guitar can be used is very exciting.” Continue reading

Squarepusher Releasing Music For Robots EP

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Warp Records has announced a new EP, composed by Squarepusher and performed by three music robots (the Z-Machines) will be released on 7th April (8th in North America).

Here’s what Squarepusher has to say about the project:

The main question I’ve tried to answer is ‘can these robots play music that is emotionally engaging?’

I have long admired the player piano works of Conlon Nancarrow and Gyorgy Ligeti. Part of the appeal of that music has to do with hearing a familiar instrument being ‘played’ in an unfamiliar fashion. For me there has always been something fascinating about the encounter of the unfamiliar with the familiar. I have long been an advocate of taking fresh approaches to existing instrumentation as much as I am an advocate of trying to develop new instruments, and being able to rethink the way in which, for example, an electric guitar can be used is very exciting.

Each of the robotic devices involved in the performance of this music has its own specification which permits certain possibilities and excludes others – the robot guitar player for example can play much faster than a human ever could, but there is no amplitude control. In the same way that you do when you write music for a human performer, these attributes have to be borne in mind – and a particular range of musical possibilities corresponds to those attributes. Consequently, in this project familiar instruments are used in ways which till now have been impossible.

Continue reading

Mario Gets His Own Band – Of Music Robots

This video, via roboband, demonstrates a custom system that allows for Nintendo gameplay audio to be automatically performed on an acoustic player piano and robotically controlled percussive instruments.

The piano and percussion play live during actual gameplay, mirroring the sounds that would normally be created electronically.

All audio, including music and sound effects, is translated in realtime so that it is produced by the instrument most closely resembling the characteristics of the original electronic sound. Continue reading