Connect Your Brain to Synthesizers, with Desktop and Modular Creations for Brainwaves

Oh, sure, you can convert MIDI and clock and DIN and control voltage. But how about brainwaves? How about jacking your noggin straight into your synths and controlling synthesizers only with your mind? It’s not quite like The Matrix, yet, if that’s what you’re imagining. But some crafty Italian inventors/experimental musicians have already whipped up a working prototype of hardware that interfaces brainwave-sensing headsets to synthesisers via analog signal and MIDI. And tomorrow, the 26th of July, they’re putting their heads where their money is, premiering the whole system in a live performance. The boxes are designed to work with …

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Inside the Intense Audiovisual Collaboration of Drøp and FAX [unrender, Video + Interview]

Drøp feat. Fax @ UNRENDER / LEHRTER SIEBZEHN / BERLIN from CDM on Vimeo. Crackling and vibrating, Drøp featuring Fax is an intense bath of sound and light, webs of lines materializing and dissolving in Fax’s visuals like microscopic alien thunderstorms. The duo played live at our first unrender session, and captivated our crowd with improvised abstract etudes. But while it may look generative, this is all done with clever manipulation of video clips – mixing disguised as algorithmic geometries. The collaboration was so tightly-knit that I was keen to hear more about how it came together. Fax presented not …

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Molding Sound with Flesh: Biophysical Muscle Music Keeps Evolving

Ominous | Incarnated sound sculpture (Xth Sense) from Marco Donnarumma on Vimeo. For all the interfaces that involve turning knobs or waving your hands in the air, artist Marco Donnarumma wanted to go deeper. His work pulses with his flesh, listening deep inside muscles for every slight impulse. And in Marco’s hands, it seems the air itself can be molded into sound – not with ethereal hand flapping, but as though the ether itself is made of dense clay. It’s been nearly two years since we spoke with Marco about his work, and the wwirord he coined for this kind …

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10 Great Releases From 2013 You Might Have Missed

Happiness is a list of new SoundCloud links to follow, records to go buy, artist names and sounds that are new – not the reappearance of repeated artists and musicians, usual suspects, and expected names, but something to actually discover. So, we’re grateful to CDM contributor Matt Earp, aka Kid Kameleon, for his selecting talents. Grab the headphones. -Ed. Top 10 lists are played out. Deconstructing what’s bad about Top 10 lists is ALSO played out. And people who make Top 10 lists miss a lot of music for all kinds of reasons – because an album isn’t in a …

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IK’s $99 BlueBoard Bluetooth Pedalboard, Stomps on iOS or Mac with MIDI

Singers or instrumentalists have plenty of brilliant-sounding apps these days running on iOS and Mac. But unless you plan to strip off those socks and play with your toes, you might want a stomp interface. IK Multimedia’s iRIG BlueBoard could be an ideal solution for Mac and iOS mobile users alike, a $99 wireless box that adds four switches and two expression inputs.

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Quiet Ensemble: Music by Pineapples, Mice, Snails, and Goldfish, and a Theater as Actor

In calm reflections on life and nature, the Quiet Ensemble lets flora and fauna compose their own ambient etudes, following their movements and tuning in on electrical frequencies. Mice running in wheels play music boxes; light and sound trace the slimy path of snails. Fruit charge up thick, glitchy bass, as goldfish perform an audiovisual quartet in rectangular aquaria. Based on Rome, this collective has produced a series of reflective audiovisual performances. Each project takes on a unique personality, musically and philosophically, so let’s look at them in turn. The snails Orienta; è qui ora, che decido di fermarmi from …

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In Poland, an Audiovisual Festival "Lab" Helps Creativity Simmer [Gallery+Video]

Sometimes it’s what’s at the margins of the event circuit that’s the most promising. Outside the known names and big-budget pieces, artists are experimenting with audiovisual expression, hacking together projects and improvising with light and sound. And in Europe and other continents, this scene is increasingly expanding beyond the cities once known as hubs – beyond a Paris or even a Berlin. That’s why I was pleased myself to participate in Patch, a festival in Krakow, Poland. In fact, riding the trains from Ostbahnhof to Krakow, talking to people my age and fifteen years younger, it was stunning to me …

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In Poland, an Audiovisual Festival “Lab” Helps Creativity Simmer [Gallery+Video]

Sometimes it’s what’s at the margins of the event circuit that’s the most promising. Outside the known names and big-budget pieces, artists are experimenting with audiovisual expression, hacking together projects and improvising with light and sound. And in Europe and other continents, this scene is increasingly expanding beyond the cities once known as hubs – beyond a Paris or even a Berlin. That’s why I was pleased myself to participate in Patch, a festival in Krakow, Poland. In fact, riding the trains from Ostbahnhof to Krakow, talking to people my age and fifteen years younger, it was stunning to me …

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Real Humans Manipulating Building Windows as Pixels, and Breakout Projection

The human element in visual performance can apply to mass ensembles as well as soloists. So, while this video has already made the blog rounds, if you missed it as I did, it’s relevant in context of yesterday’s discussion of adding a human to projection mapping. In “ANIMATED TOWER / (HESAV s’anime!,” the team of NOTsoNOISY Guillaume Reymond and Trivial Mass Production transforms the 11-story HESAV tower in Switzerland. Don’t miss the behind-the-scenes video that begins roughly halfway through; that story is almost as compelling as the end result itself. (See today on CDMusic for the reflection that sometimes the …

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When Hundreds of Visualists Converge: Ioann Maria Explains LPM's Revolutionary Vision

Ioann Maria about Live Performers Meeting from LVX.TV Institute for Live-Video on Vimeo. VJ day, indeed. What will it take for live visuals to reach a new level of expression? Perhaps that answer is human, not technical, involving newcomers as well as experts, unknown and undiscovered talent as well as celebrities, and getting as much of that personal power connected with others. The experience of attending a festival like the Live Performers Meeting can be, for a visual artist, simply revolutionary. For isolated artists, the pilgrimage to this festival is very often a labor of love, self-funded by creators whose …

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