Sunday, June 7, 2009

Song of the Orbs


So we've been refreshing the sound modules on SWARM, and have been experimenting with multitrack audio. The idea is that you can, with one command, get all the orbs to play back different mp3 files at the same time, and they will stay roughly synchronized. Erik found some great multitrack Flaming Lips and a highlight of running the orbs was tooling around on the mothership, very late one night, to the sounds of the Orbs singing.

This sounded so good that I was inspired to make my own music for the Orbs. Originally this was a 64 minute audioscape I procedurally composed as an aid to insomnia (as much as I love Eno's Thursday Afternoon, there's only so many times you can listen to something, plus it's a little sparse to mask noise very well). It's not really a song, as nothing really happens: it's essentially a "Steve Reich ninth chord" (my specialist terminology) with some high-Q filter sweeps that pick out harmonics above. I re-mastered it as six separate stereo tracks, one for each robot; since it's one chord they will naturally harmonize. Seeing as how you likely don't have spare robots rolling around, here it is as one long track to soothe your insomnia (it's not particularly exciting): song_of_the_orbs.mp3 (77 MB)

Photo Credit: Marcus Hertlein

Tagged: swarm



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