‘Edge of Nostalgia’ is a Calming Ambient iPhone Album Transformed by Mic

Edge of Nostalgia from Michael McDermott on Vimeo. Ambient, and — actually, literally ambient. Mikronesia’s “Edge of Nostalgia” is a chilled-out 7-track record of gentle grooves and crystalline melodies, delivered as an app. That’s nice enough. But with the aid of your iPhone’s microphone, you and the environment around you become part of the soundscape. Ambient sounds are fed through great washes of reverb and chattering chains of delays. Recently updated for iOS 7, the result is an album that is different each time you listen. As the creator notes, plenty of records include stock sounds of field recordings. Here, …

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Water Light Graffiti: Painting with Water, Transformed into Light, and Urban Communication

Installation Water Light Graffiti // par Antonin Fourneau // du 06/06 au 30/06 à Stereolux Nantes from stereolux on Vimeo. Perhaps digitality is necessarily about the ephemeral. That could explain the fascination with making “graffiti” using light and digital paint, participatory but impermanent. The latest twist on the meme comes to us from Nantes, France. Here, adding to the spirit of the temporary, the “brush” uses water to light LEDs. The “Water Light Graffiti” is a surface made of thousands of LED illuminated by the contact of water. You can use a paintbrush, a water atomizer, your fingers or anything …

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Responsive Kinect Dancing Goes Hip-Hop [Video, Tips]

Body mapping and dance/visual fusions are still explored only in fits and starts, compared to the extent of live music and visual performance in other media. So, it’s encouraging to see this latest experiment from dancer Christian Mio Loclair. Working with Microsoft’s Kinect, the slowly-undulating tendrils of visuals behind him create visual counterpoint for headstands and hip-hop dance techniques. Far from running up against latency, here there’s a sense of visuals that answer the moves with a slow sigh, creating a kind of living architectural space behind him. The tools: ofxOpenNI and ofxCV work with OpenFrameworks to analyze imagery from …

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Gantz Graf, the Max for Live Plug-in: Reactive-Visualizing Your Tracks

Hang about. I may have given away the punchline in the headline, and now there’s not much more to say. “Hey, is there a plug-in out there that I can just switch on and visualize music with?” I can’t count the number of times I get asked this. That could make the following a very popular download, indeed. Animator Alex Rutterford’s original Gantz Graf video, interestingly, was not reacting to audio. But generative technique has moved on since then, so aping the style of the visuals in a patch makes some sense. The results aren’t perfect, but they do demonstrate …

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josh-ott-and-thicket

Thicket for iOS Thickens; Artists Describe the Growth of an Audiovisual Playground

By the 1990s, the notion that computer software could be a means of delivering interactive digital art more personally was enjoying a Renaissance. This was the age of the Voyager CD-ROM, which catered to new multimedia PCs and Macs with titles from the likes of Laurie Anderson and Morton Subotnick, the decade in which Brian Eno released Generative Music as software and Monolake – before Ableton – included a Max/MSP patch with an album. But the reach of these experiments was doomed to be relatively limited. Now, of course, things are different. First, we saw some widely-available audiovisual toys, coinciding …

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libpd_site

Pd, Everywhere: Free libpd Gets a New Site, New Book on Making Mobile Music Apps

Pure Data (Pd) is already a free, convenient tool for making synths, effects, and sequencers and other musical generators. But imagine stripping away all the things that tie it to a platform – UI, specific hardware support – so it will run just about anywhere, on anything, in any context. That’s what libpd, a free, embeddable, open source (BSD) tool for making interactive music, does. Coders can take their favorite language and their favorite platform, and just plug in the power of Pd. They don’t even have to know almost anything about Pd – they can let an intrepid Pd …

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Music for a Place, as Central Park Becomes a Score, and Location Meets Recording

There was a time when the ability to record and playback music didn’t exist – such things were magical fiction no one had seen. So, the idea of playing one channel of recorded sound, then two channels, had to be invented. Artists hadn’t created something called an “album” until there were devices that played back that monophonic and stereophonic sound; even the idea that such a strange art counted as “music” had to be constructed. It’s obvious now, but it’s easy to forget that these musical forms were produced to cater to the capabilities of what was once a new …

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Colored Cubes Light Up in Responsive DJ Stage for "The Paranormal Unicorn"

So, you probably think that you can bring out a massive array of colored LED boxes, have them pulse hypnotically to your music, and dazzle us, because we love color and light. You’re probably right. CDM reader Stefan Yazzie writes: A few friends and I created this audio-visual DJ stage to accompany our live shows. We are the visual collective ‘The Paranormal Unicorn’ and this is our new baby. It’s made of wood, plexiglass, some custom programming, a lot of electronics and even more love. DJ duo Skitzophonics plays the music atop the stage, which involved, say the creators, “hundreds …

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Colored Cubes Light Up in Responsive DJ Stage for “The Paranormal Unicorn”

So, you probably think that you can bring out a massive array of colored LED boxes, have them pulse hypnotically to your music, and dazzle us, because we love color and light. You’re probably right. CDM reader Stefan Yazzie writes: A few friends and I created this audio-visual DJ stage to accompany our live shows. We are the visual collective ‘The Paranormal Unicorn’ and this is our new baby. It’s made of wood, plexiglass, some custom programming, a lot of electronics and even more love. DJ duo Skitzophonics plays the music atop the stage, which involved, say the creators, “hundreds …

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unravel

FOUND Installation Plays Narration, Robotic Music with Vinyl, Unravels Truth

One perhaps unexpected impact of technology has been to change the way we think about ourselves and our experience. Recording equipment – from photography to phonograph – has given us a new sense that memory itself might be fixed, unchanging, an accurate record of an unmoving truth. Except, of course, neither the recorded object nor the thing it is recording ever quite seems to work out that way. (Ask your local theoretical physicist, or for a more localized, humanized, sociological view, any loved one.) UNRAVEL is an installation that uses just those sorts of technologies to construct a narrative, and …

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