How Gloves and Wearable Tech Could Change Music Performance: In Depth with Imogen Heap and Team

In fits and starts, musical interface inventors have tried for decades to make manipulating digital music more expressive. But that persistence comes out of a clear goal post. They want the machine’s seemingly-endlessly possibilities to fit the human like a glove. Imogen Heap is no stranger to pushing the boundaries of electronic musical performance, always making it seem as effortless as her songwriting and stage presence. For the Gloves Project, she assembled a super-team of wearable experts, interaction designers, and music researchers, several doctorates between them. This who’s-who have finally unveiled a project they’re ready to make public, and the …

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Deliciously Dark: Free Mix from Austria’s Houztekk, Electric Indigo, and Why the Music Matters

Dense, dark, packed, young and fresh. No, not the club – this mix. We invite Electric Indigo (Vienna’s Susanne Kirchmayr) to tell us about her new, freely-downloadable podcast with Linz, Austria’s Houztekk Records. It’s a shadowy, labyrinthian journey through the newest and most adventurous sounds in techno. And by techno, she means a wide range of noisy, broken-beat, resonating — well, let’s let her explain. That is, along with listening, because Susanne has a unique talent for producing a simmering, tasty stew from all these component parts. Or, to the music, as Tim Exile says in his track title: “It’s …

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Sound from Silos: Live Experimental Audiovisuals Rumble a Man-made Cave [Watch, Listen]

Electronic music, once the exclusive domain of secluded art laboratories, has now made the connection to clubs inseparable. The rhythms of dance music draw a line from popular to research; the software and gear marketed for dance musicians cross-pollinating with more experimental tools, as music styles, textures, and timbres mix, as well. But now, finding a way out of that club context and its restrictions may be as vital as the emergence from the lab years ago. Making connections between Argentina and Germany, across an international collective of audiovisual artists, FxLD’s latest project invades a disused grain silo in Berlin. …

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Resonate Gathers Bleeding-Edge Digital Media in Serbia; Watch it in Videos

Resonate 2013 – SR from Resonate Festival on Vimeo. The collision of talent and ideas online is a powerful force, but it’s nothing compared to the energy that’s released as you put people together, in person. So, I’m excited to be traveling next week to Belgrade for Resonate Festival, both to meet the community of artists, curators, and students in Serbia, and also the many folks traveling from around Europe and the world. I hope we can all report back. I was going to start to try to run down who’s there, but there are too many women and men …

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How Music Label Vlek Makes Ephemeral Sound Physical, While Giving Away Their Catalog [Gallery, Interview]

When music moved from live venues to radios and recordings, artists had to find a way to respond. Now, labels struggle to be heard in the era of Spotify and streaming, always-on, always-overabundant media. We could talk grander themes, but the possibilities of this conflict are most vivid in a microcosm. Call it post-digital or what you will, but being digital now means something different. For Belgian label, Vlek, that reality takes a number of forms, suggestive of the direction for independent electronic music. And so, in Ssaliva’s release for Vlek, executed by Dimitri Runkkari (part of Brussels’ design studio …

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V-4 Video Mixer, Now HDMI: First Look at Roland’s V-4EX

For years, the Roland V-4 was the battle axe of the VJ and visual performance scene. Not owning one almost meant you weren’t serious about playing. And the ubiquity of these at community events meant more collaborative and back-to-back sets. Then computers evolved past – and even dropped – composite/component analog video outs, and the V-4 was left behind. The V-8 was a step forward, but still couldn’t keep up with the shift in video ins and outs. At last, we get the Roland V-4EX. Like the original V-4, it’s a four-channel mixer with effects. And it shares the V-4’s …

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V-4 Video Mixer, Now HDMI: First Look at Roland's V-4EX

For years, the Roland V-4 was the battle axe of the VJ and visual performance scene. Not owning one almost meant you weren’t serious about playing. And the ubiquity of these at community events meant more collaborative and back-to-back sets. Then computers evolved past – and even dropped – composite/component analog video outs, and the V-4 was left behind. The V-8 was a step forward, but still couldn’t keep up with the shift in video ins and outs. At last, we get the Roland V-4EX. Like the original V-4, it’s a four-channel mixer with effects. And it shares the V-4’s …

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Reflections on Projection Mapping, as Masters and Apprentices Meet

Projection Mapping thoughts. Telenoika Mapping Workshop from Telenoika on Vimeo. The development of perspective illusion in Europe didn’t come from an individual artist. There was no single breakthrough moment. The refinement of the technique was a collective, communal activity, forged in workshops and apprenticeships. So, it’s fitting that the development of projection media around the same notions of perspective would be communal in the same way. Now, we’re back in Europe, but as a single focal point for a movement that’s truly global, now no longer controlled by guilds or the like, but as flat and open as the Internet. …

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Good Trips: Bubbling Colored Goo in Live AV for Laurel Halo [Hyperdub], Konx-om-pax

Laurel Halo: 2012 European Tour Trailer from Hyperdub on Vimeo. Trips through Europe are just a bit more trippy with the aid of Scottish visualist Konx-om-pax. His visuals will be along for the ride as Hyperdub’s Laurel Halo makes her way through Europe this fall, the perfect foil to her dubby experimental machinations live. At just 26 years old, the artist has fitted his strange, colored oscillations of 3D goo to some bass music giants, with beautiful results. Here’s what the folks behind Laurel Halo have to say about this latest collaboration, as she launches her autumnal tour: [The] AV …

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Generative Design Book Coming in English; Watch a Full-Length Talk on Generative Techniques

Generative Gestaltung from Benedikt Groß on Vimeo. “Generative design,” as a concept, describes design that goes beyond the direct hands of the creator, to the work that can emerge from rules and systems in organic fashion, in productions that require computer code – and with it, mathematic thought – to realize the realms of imagination. It’s also the title of perhaps my favorite book on creative coding, a gorgeous tome that explores design concepts clearly and simply in the language Processing. That book, Generative Gestaltung, was available initially in German, then translated to French, but at last is available to …

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