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Onyx Wants to Make Himself Into Helmeted, Wearable-Music-Tech Tron, With Your Help

A helmet and hand units make up the TRON performance system for a style of music artist Onyx Ashanti calls “beatjazz.” And he’s well on his way to making a reality. All images courtesy the artist. Onyx Ashanti is insane – in the special, essential way that makes certain brilliant musicians. An experienced busker, having crossed from the US to Berlin, he’s a rare virtuoso of wind instruments and electronic improvisation, the kind of musically-free soul who can just let loose live. But his latest project really crosses into some new territory. He’s making himself into Tron. No, really – …

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Audiovisual Remix: Tron Legacy Lightcycles

Tron Legacy – Miguex & EshOne – Light Cycles [Unofficial] from Accent Creative on Vimeo. Our friends at Accent Creative indulge themselves in some Tron love, cutting up the new Lightcycle sequence and composing their own, original music score. (Take that, Daft Punk!) It’s like the audiovisual equivalent of those fabulous blue slushies you get at the cineplex, which I have a feeling is what I’ll be downing when this thing opens, just to keep the glucose flowing to my neocortex. Or maybe that’s just what the color palette is making me think. It’s also a great example of musicians …

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Alternative Controllers: Eigenharp Users Reflect on Playing a New Kind of Instrument

Photo courtesy Eigenlabs. Novel instruments come and go; futuristic ideas appear in demos, wow crowds, and then vanish just as quickly. In order to really become part of musical practice, they require practice. And with something as unusual as the Eigenharp – a digital music controller that looks like the love child of a bassoon and a fretboard and connects to a computer – they even necessitate new techniques and strategies. Enter musician Geert Bevin. As the creator of the fan site Eigenzone, he’s been a tireless champion of the instrument. He’s been compiling videos revealing player techniques and ideas …

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Interview: Jon Hopkins Talks Live, Studio Process, Habit, Instinct

Jon Hopkins performs live at the ICA. Photo (CC-BY-SA) Matt Biddulph. Classically trained as a pianist, musician and producer Jon Hopkins has one of the richest resumes in electronic music. He’s a frequent collaborator with Brian Eno, wand has worked with artists like Coldplay (who featured his music on their last album), Tunng, David Holmes, and Imogen Heap. He worked with director Peter Jackson, and has a sci-fi score on the way. He also has a rich set of solo releases. And we’ve seen him here recently with remix swaps with Four Tet and contributions to Eno’s upcoming Warp record. …

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Shared Inspiration: Beeple Talks Process, 3D Sound Robots, Work to Watch

We got to once again enjoy the work of Beeple aka Mike Winkelmann this week with his Instrument Video Nine, featuring a new batch of 3D sound-making robots. The work landed him on the top of Vimeo, and rightfully so. Mike now shares some of his work flow All the (wonderful, hand-rawn) pictures by Mike Winkelmann. The robots video at bottom. Tools used: Video: Cinema 4D, After Effects, Flash, Vegas, Fireworks Audio: FL Studio, Vegas What was the workflow like? A lot of people ask what came first, the music or the video. They really sort of came out of …

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Video: Modeling Vipers for Battlestar Galactica, in Near Real-Time

Shuttle, the compact PC folks, have posted a step-by-step walkthrough demonstrating how artists model the Viper fighter craft for the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica. (That might seem like odd timing, but Sci Fi Channel — now SyFy — continues to crank out spinoffs of the show, so there’s plenty of modeling work to be done.) What’s nice about the video is seeing how much of the workflow is now becoming real-time. That illustrates how the long-awaited convergence between traditional modeling and effects and live visuals is finally coming to pass. As three-dimensional design becomes more about “right now” and less about …

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Free Soundtrack for an Imagined Tron Movie: Rise of the Virals

What if, between the original classic Tron and the upcoming Tron 2: Legacy, there were another Tron movie, lost forever in cinematic history? Between the soaring score by Wendy Carlos for the original and Legacy’s Daft Punk music, what would the soundtrack have sounded like? Of course, it would have absolutely had some Journey in it. Such a movie was rumored, but as with so many projects, leaves behind no evidence. What if it had left a score you could hear? The mysterious “Flynn 1.5” writes to share a free, downloadable soundtrack that answers that question. And you can argue …

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The Sonic Manipulator: Bizarre Wearable Musical Inventions, Stolen from Space Aliens?

It may be 2009, but you can still play electronic music as though you’re an invading alien visitor from the future. Just ask The Sonic Manipulator, an electronic musical performer and inventor, alias Claude Woodward. His musical creations range from warped radios to instruments derived from turntable scratches and Theremins. And then there are some instruments that seem to be sonic weapons. (Apologies to recent protesters in Pittsburgh.) CDM reader Andrew Cordani caught Claude at the UK’s British Invention Show. Claude is apparently a Perth, Australia transplant, by way of Cambridge, though Andrew writes that he “has been known to …

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Music Video Favorites: Birdy Nam Nam’s Wonderful Animated World

BIRDY NAM NAM – THE PARACHUTE ENDING from Steve Scott on Vimeo. This is the music video you’ve always dreamed of getting when your track gets a music video. It’s been round the Web a few months ago, but I only discovered it today via the lovely 8-bit punk Anamanaguchi (see our interview), on their Twitter feed. It’s like what you worked out when bored in grade school Chemistry class with your best friend who planned to become a comic book artist for a career, scrawled in the margins of your notebook. There’s an evil Egyptian alien sarcophagus shooting what …

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