Hip Musical Flash Movies and How to Use Your Head as a Mallet

Tokyoplastic’s Flash animations have won them widespread acclaim, including a Sundance Online award for their film drummachine. Their animation is hip, sexy, and centers around fabulous sound design with dramatic musical cues. Don’t miss the drum machine in particular — because nothing can compare with watching someone use their head as a mallet. To find it, you’ll have to do a little site navigation: click ‘enter tokyoplastic’ for the Flash site and then prepare to watch the user interface try to crawl away from you. Just be patient: find drummachine or poke around other bits of the site. So the …

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Hunting the Drum Buddy and Miss Pussycat

We’re going to need a “Where are they now?” edition for bizarre instrument design projects. Case in point: the Drum Buddy. Reader “fer” writes, succinctly, “wassup with this?” The answer, fer, is wassup indeed. This strange light-powered instrument had its fifteen seconds of fame on the Music Thing blog last summer, but its whereabouts now are more mysterious. According to its creators, the Drum Buddy “represents the future of electronic instruments.” If so, we have a future of pulsing, noisy oscillators-gone-awry played by the likes of Miss Pussycat “and her puppets.” For its part, the Drum Buddy itself uses light …

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Music from Hand Shadow Puppets: Manual Input

Regine reports from Cybersonica on a “manual input” method for controlling sound and image — no, really “manual,” as in hands — on Near Near Future. Golan Levin and Zachary Lieberman have developed a system that analyzes hand movements above an overhead projector. Projected imagery combines the direct output of the overhead (i.e., they shine the overhead at a screen) with digitally-modified projections. Their use of the technology is strikingly simple and elegant — check the photos and videos on their site. I’m looking forward to Regine’s report!

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Finger-Puppet DJing

One thing you probably didn't see last weekend at Miami's WMC: this DJ. (via audioserve) Call it world's cutest scratching. Netherlands-based Lejo specializes in this unique hand + props marionette theater. And the show tours — if you happen to be passing through, say, Segovia or Mechelen. What, you say? You don't think DJs are real musicians? Fine. Check this rockin' accordion duet.

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MIDI Sock Puppet

Too shy to make funny voices while using your sock puppet? Be the life of a party, with a MIDI sock puppet that can make silly 'singing' noises or play a synth. A single flex sensor (we're guessing) can even manipulate pitch in a mode. Brought to you by UK's Matthew Irvine Brown and, of course, via near near future. HP's DJammer has nothing on this. Link (with videos and tech details)

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