How To Use Your Body As An Analog Instrument

In this episode of the Motherboard series Sound Builders, host Samantha Urbani (Blood Orange) talks with Brooklyn-based, interactive sound artist Adriano Clemente, who proceeds to turn Urbani’s body into an analog instrument.

Show Summary:

Andriano Clemente is a DJ, hacker, gamer and music producer but to sum things up, we’ve dubbed him a techno-collagist. It’s the most accurate description for Adriano, since he uses a multitude of existing technology and custom parts whose official purposes are hardly designed for making music.

We see this firsthand when our host Samantha had her arm turned into an analog instrument. With a medical sensor strapped to her forearm, Adriano was able to turn her muscle contractions into data to perform and compose music through the rarely explored art of biofeedback.

Adriano goes on to explore the relationship between body, sensors and sound by showing us how a piezo contact microphone can be used to transform any piece of backyard junk into a percussive and melodic instrument. Some people call it physical modeling synthesis but we just call it pretty much amazing.

Adriano’s objective is clear: to create a new kinesthetic approach to sound design that totally flips our notion that music is made from a traditional instrument or from interfacing with your mouse, keyboard and screen. This kind of research in tactile, computer music embodiment is not only important for reimagining our conventional vision of an instrument, but also for cutting in half the frustration from wanting to perform in front of millions but having no idea how to play a single note.

12 thoughts on “How To Use Your Body As An Analog Instrument

  1. 8:20 “it’s really rebellious” says the blonde

    having mixed feelings here right now, actually mostly I am pissed off. So excuse me fellow readers,
    but how the funk these post-pop-trash-hipster-neandardals managed to avoid the wonderful of experimental, electric & electronic music that goes back to a 100+ years, the truly innovative and ground-breaking approaches on making music and thus changing forever our perception of it.

    Instead of using what today has to offer and that is past knowledge and experience coupled with user friendly tech, the new media culture is trying to sell revolution and innovation packaged in overpriced flashing toys.

    sorry for the attitude but…

  2. Well i has thought of using my body in other ways too such as..
    .. Analog Body Farts
    .. Chin Rubbing Phaser Filters
    .. Nipple knob frequency modulators
    .. Finger Poking Envelope Followers
    .. Chafing Granular Bowel influx voltage inputs
    .. Harmonic Gas frequency shifters

  3. All these flashy words: future, rebel, innovative, lasers, controllers, bio-feedback and still it all sounds like early 2000s clones of Autechre. Pretty sad, what can i say.

  4. It was fairly flimsy all through, but when he started talking about doing yoga poses to make music, it was over. As someone who has a daily music practice, and a daily yoga practice, I can confidently say this guy is a wank, and he has completely missed the point of both.

  5. So…how much of a rebel are you if the iPad is at the center of your ‘paradigm shifting’ tool kit? That suggests off-the-shelf software. *yawn*

  6. Jesus. Negative-o-rama. Can we at least give respect to those who are making and creating things? You don’t necessarily have to like what they are doing, but at least pay some respect to the effort. Let’s face it, this is the world we live in.

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