Category Archives: gamestrument

monome as turntable

The glitch musician Bit Basic, who made the excellent Grating Rainbows netalbum on Monotonik, has created a…

Max/MSP patch for the ‘monome’ interface called ‘dj64’. It allows the user to model the actions of conventional turntables


dj64 for Monome – by Bitbasic from simon on Vimeo.


Thinking about the monome in terms of the convergence of music making and gaming, this casts the turntable as a primitive ancestor of the handheld game console.


P.S.: I turned that audio page on Internet Archive into a playlist by incorporating Goose/Yahoo Media Player/FoxyPlayer and linking with this syntax:

<a 
href="http://www.archive.org/details/mtk186" 
class="playthispage">
  Grating Rainbows
</a>

games vs streams

What are the economic prospects for in-game music making?

October sales numbers for video game-related products, set against the background of a 1% overall drop, from allheadlinenews.com:

  • hardware sales up 5%
  • software up 35%
  • total up 7%

Not that the news is all good by any means, but relatively speaking it seems to be the cream of the economy. Compare this situation to the one that ad-sponsored music streamers like Pandora and iMeem are facing; the online ad market is in freefall, but the royalties they owe on streams are the same.

Thanks to gurdonark for the link.

gamestrument star

Little Boots on stage

This is the official music video for the song “Ready for the Floor” by Hot Chip:

This cover version played on the Tenori-on has 100,407 views:

Greg describes the situation this way:

I came across the Tenori-on a while back because of Little Boots. She’s a YouTube phenom who use it and quite a strong voice to do excellent covers […]. It’s interesting how the game-nature of the tenori-on masks what is a relatively sophisticated beat programming and singing performance on her part.

More Little Boots:

Choice LB quote: fun is the new cool. Fuck if she isn’t right. Goddamn that’s a great way of articulating the YouTube esthetic.

A LB fan blog:

Let us bask in the glow of Little Boots.

Little Boots is from Blackpool, England.

[…] let’s assume she’s not hiding a debut album of dire, mid-paced, excitement-killing — quote-fingers! — mature songs, throwing it all away already.

Popjustice writes, “Little Boots is a totally bullet-proof 21st century popstar. This is Kylie and the Pet Shop Boys all in one person.”

Little Boots is, in other words, a single girl’s celebration of pop. Modern but not pretentious. Sophisticated but not snide. Fantastic in a bright, talented, left-field, sometimes ridiculous, and promisingly unique sort of way.

Little Boots wants us to believe that she will never let us down.

Little Boots can make pop a better place.

Little Boots says, “Fun Is The New Cool”.

100% fan-crush.

gamestrument #2

sull posts a screencast of his session with the innerpartysystem gamestrument, in which he gets high score.

Question: how would you do “high score”? Couldn’t you have ratings on these things to enable that?

Question: is it possible to have really different expressions in a gamestrument, or is the expressive range more limited than that? Is there more than one song in a given set of samples, or are all jams pretty much the same?


Greg brings up r2dj and Bloom as relations if not siblings to innerpartysystem. I did play with Bloom, though not a lot. And with r2dj I watched the tutorial but didn’t snag it myself.

These are both generative music apps which accept input from the user. They’re different from the innerpartysystem app in the way that the user/player interacts. In innerpartysystem the user is directly triggering music events in real time, while in r2dj and Bloom the user is tweaking parameters. An r2dj creator is writing software to react to the runtime environment. In Bloom the creator is injecting randomness in a John Cage-inspired style.

Anybody out there gotten closer to them than this?

birth of the gamestrument

Embed:

No embed: http://innerpartysystem.shuffl.es/dontstop?r=63

That is fucking wondrous.


First of all, the impact of in-browser-music-making is not trivial or obvious. You can’t be blase about it.

But beyond that, what’s striking about this particular hack is how high-level it is. It pulls the end user up several levels from decisions like the selection of video clips or specification of harmonic progressions. The user is closer to the level of a music game like Guitar Hero, except that game play is open ended. You don’t score points by playing this game, you make music.


It would be cool to use a selection of these open-ended-music-games as the DJ for a party. Maybe there would be a person selecting and queuing up the games, so that there was some kind of playlist. The overall impression would be similar to parties where the music is coming from people doing Rock Band or Guitar Hero.


Know of anything similar out there? Instruments verging on games and vice versa?