Things That Sound Like…

I keep seeing more and more videos of objects that sound like other things. Whether this is a trend, I do not know. It’s fantastic for sure. For instance, a trash can that sounds like John Coltrane:

A car that plays light jazz:

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Da Veranda – Out Of Your Roof / Tweet

Tweet - By Da Veranda

Hi! We’ve released an album with playful beats. This is an experiment in which we created 11 songs with vocals without lyrics.

Come and enjoy this uncommon music on our veranda: crazy but lekker!* Groovy mellow beats accompanied by a velvet voice singing catchy melodies without lyrics. De-stress from the world that’s full of words and talk, because as Jobim said in his one note samba “there’s so many people that just talk and talk and talk and just say nothing, or nearly nothing” and slip into a universal global world without lyrics where everybody can understand everybody, or to quote Stevie Wonder “music is a world within itself with a language we all understand.”

The album consists of eleven songs in various styles and combinations, from tango to mambo, where occasional boogaloo meets balkan, while dance is mixed with reggae, a Brazilian groove is merged with Colombian cumbia and a smooth jazzy atmosphere dissolves into gospel. All songs are accompanied by deliciously contagious and harmonized vocals bringing a positive vibe to mankind! (age: from 0 – 100 +).

Here’s the video clip for ‘Tweet’.

And here you can find the other songs.

My experiences with ROLI Seaboard Rise

Roli Seaboard Rise

This week, I had the pleasure to test a Roli Seaboard. Here are some of my findings.


  • Most sensitive ‘keyboard’ interface I’ve ever touched. Superior polyphonic, after touch pressure, sliding and gliding. If I compare this to touch interfaces on for instance iPad, this is so much more musical!
  • Very interesting for creating, modifying sounds, sound design, ambiences, etc.
  • It is very flat. If this is on your desk, you hardly have to lift your arm, which is rather nice from an ergonomic perspective.
  • This thing looks fantastic and the build quality is truly superior to any MIDI keyboard I’ve ever played.
  • Very silent interaction. No rattling keys or clicking knobs.
  • Easy to integrate. This is a MIDI (over USB/Bluetooth) controller, so it’ll work like it’s supposed to.


  • This is not a keyboard for PIANO or ORGAN playing. The silicone rubber introduces friction and you’re not going to enjoy playing your fast Jimmy Smith licks on a piece of silicone.
  • Pitch bend range in many VST synths is not adjustable. The default usually is set to 2 semitones, which is far from ideal. If it’s set to 2 semitones, sliding a note to a different key will not correspond to the position on the keyboard. A deal-breaker.
  • It is a dust collector. Rubber loves dust. Keep your studio clean! Also, the rubber underneath the Seaboard has to be kept clean, since the Seaboard will move when you glide over the keys.
  • This reminds me a bit of playing an Ashbory bass. The rubber surface feels a bit rough. The Ashbory is played with talc, I wonder if this also improves the feeling of the Seaboard.
  • Even the Seaboard 25 is heavy to carry.


  • You have to learn how to play it, and also how to integrate it in your DAW. You’ll probably frown when you first play it. Chances are you’ll love it after two days.
  • This is not a piano keyboard controller. It’s a new and different way of controlling and shaping sound in a DAW. Playing the Seaboard is like playing octopuses. Playing octopuses is interesting and inspiring. Is this why it’s called the Seaboard?

Here is a video demonstrating my first experiences with the Seaboard.

Music Moves: Why Does Music Make You Move? Free online course


Here’s a pointer to a free online course offered by the University of Oslo. Learn about the psychology of music and movement, and how researchers study music-related movements.

Music is movement. A bold statement, but one that we will explore together in this free online course. Together we will study music through different types of body movement. This includes everything from the sound-producing keyboard actions of a pianist to the energetic dance moves in a club.

You will learn about the theoretical foundations for what we call embodied music cognition and why body movement is crucial for how we experience the emotional moods in music. We will also explore different research methods used at universities and conservatories. These include advanced motion capture systems and sound analysis methods.

You will be guided by a group of music researchers from the University of Oslo, with musical examples from four professional musicians. The course is rich in high-quality text, images, video, audio and interactive elements.

Join us to learn more about terms such as entrainment and musical metaphors, and why it is difficult to sit still when you experience a good groove.

International Computer Music Conference ICMC2016 (CfP and announcement)


International Computer Music Conference ICMC2016.
(12 – 16 September 2016, Utrecht, the Netherlands)

ICMC 2016 will be hosted in the city of Utrecht, by HKU University of the Arts Utrecht, HKU Music and Technology and the annual new music festival Gaudeamus Muziekweek.
The conference begins with a concert on the evening of Sunday 11 September 2016 and ends with a concert on the evening of Friday 16 September.

The main theme of the conference will be Is the sky the limit?
This theme will be addressed in five sub-themes:

  1. Is the sky determined by technology or aesthetics?
    2. Is the sky local?
    3. Educating for the sky
    4. Does the sky need a composer or musician?
    5. Stretching the sky

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VR audio techniques

creature sound placement

Great talk on VR Audio!

3D audio is critical for creating a believable virtual world, and sound design for VR is very different from traditional games or movies. This talk will cover VR audio techniques including building immersive ambiences, attenuation curves, mixing and player focus. You’ll hear some of the sound design tricks used in the Oculus demos, and learn more about how to work with the Audio SDK to create authentic and compelling experiences.

[via Mark, thanks!]

Game Audio Industry Survey 2015

Just a quick pointer to the Game Audio Industry Survey!

The game development web site, Gamasutra, recently published the results of their annual game developer salary survey. This year, the results were somewhat puzzling, with “audio” salaries coming in higher than every other discipline except “business and management.”

Part of the reason for this unexpected result is that audio, more than most other game disciplines, has a very high percentage of non-salaried freelancers, which are unaccounted for in the Gamautra survey. Gamasutra also commented on the “smaller pool of respondents,” (33 “audio professionals” completed the survey) causing the results to be “more easily skewed.”

With that in mind, Brian Schmidt et al created a survey that attempted to more accurately capture the issues of contracts, terms and compensation in game audio.

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Put out fire with BASS! – Sonic Fire Extinguisher

A duo of undergraduates at George Mason University in Virginia created a device that they say puts out fires with a pretty daft bass tone.

The Game Pulse – Timing Game Events and Music Events [PDF]

Here’s a pointer to a paper in which we examine how to design nonlinear music systems that allow for music events to coincide and correspond with dynamically changing game events. We address the challenges of connecting nonlinear music systems to gameplay and distinguish three approaches for timing time music events and game events: Trail, Sync and Lead. We explore these three approaches in the design case study Gluddle versus The Supervision, a game created by the authors. Our preliminary findings illustrate the benefits of combining Trail, Sync and Lead, positively influencing the game experience, but also the need for extra attention to gameplay balance and technical implementation.

Download The Game Pulse – Timing Game Events and Music Events

By Richard van Tol and Sander Huiberts – Proceedings Innovation In Music 2013. Innovation In Music 2013. Edited by R. Hepworth-Sawyer, J.Hodgson, R. Toulson & J.L. Paterson. ISBN 978-0-9561516-8-1

Diggin’ in the Carts – Japanese Video Game Music History


Just after receiving the message that BEEP started filming at GameSoundCon (apparently, this really is the time for documenting Game Music History), Yme sent me a message about Diggin’ In The Carts. Diggin’ In The Carts is a new series from Red Bull Music Academy about the untold story behind the most influential music to come out of Japan. Check back each Thursday, from September 4th to October 9th, for new episodes, mixes, and bonus interview footage. Sweet!

[Go to the Diggin’ in the Carts website]