Music

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Illustration Music

Become a Piano Savant with This Clever Guide to Classic Tunes by Christoph Niemann

January 22, 2020

Grace Ebert

“How to Please Elise” (2020), 16.5 x 11.8 inches, letterpress print on Gmund Colors Matt 21, 200g/m2. All images © Christoph Niemann

Your days of expensive piano lessons are over. Master the foreboding notes in Jaws, a nursery rhyme often repeated by kids, and of course,”Für Elise,” with this straightforward diagram from Christoph Niemann (previously). In his riff on Beethoven’s classic,  “How to Please Elise” provides simple instructions on how to play the first 51 notes of the German composer’s masterpiece with ease through a diagrammed sequence similar to an old-school instructional dance chart. Niemann even said on Instagram that the notes are fact-checked and accurate, so anyone attempting to follow his directions should produce the widely recognized tunes. If you want to add one these signed prints to your collection, though, you should hurry: Niemann only printed 100.

 

 



Art Music

Brass Horns Mounted in Interactive Sculptures by Steve Parker Emit Sound By Touch

January 21, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Ghost Box” (2018). All images © Steve Parker

Artist and musician Steve Parker’s latest interactive projects invite viewers to feel the music⁠—literally. Activated by touch, “Ghost Box” plays randomized audio segments on a loop, including the ticks of Morse Code, the chorus of spirituals, and the blows of the shofar and Iron Age Celtic carnyx. Each time someone makes contact with a part of the wall sculpture, a new noise emits. Inspired by WWII era short wave radio, the mounted piece is constructed from a mix of salvaged brass, tactical maps, paper musical scores, wires, map pins, electronics, audio components, and an instrument case. The name even references the paranormal tool sometimes employed when people try to communicate with those who have died.

In line with “Ghost Box,” Parker created “Ghost Scores,” which is an ink on paper, pins, and electrical wire combination that mimics a music staff and markings, or visual language. In a statement about the project, the artist links the audio-visual work more explicitly to its history.

The Ghost Army was an Allied Army tactical deception unit during World War II. Their mission was to impersonate other Allied Army units to deceive the enemy. From a few weeks before D-Day, when they landed in France, until the end of the war, they put on a “traveling road show” utilizing inflatable tanks, sound trucks, fake radio transmissions, scripts, and sound projections.

The Austin-based artist’s audio-visual projects often combine real-time interactions with pre-recorded calls and music. His 2018 project, “Sirens,” which plays intermittent distress signals and recorded voices based on traditional defense noises, features multiple brass bells connected to a central conduit, allowing the alarms to be amplified in several places.

“Ghost Box” (2018)

“Sirens” (2018)

ASMR Étude #1” depends on the viewer having an auto sensory meridian response, a phenomenon during which a tone causes a tingling sensation in the listener’s body. Using a pair of headphones with two brass bells attached to each side, the wearer moves near small speakers mounted on a wall, generating the sounds, and hopefully, the prickly feeling.

A group of Parker’s projects are on view at CUE Art Foundation in New York City through February 12, and you stay up to date with his work on Twitter. (via Design Milk)

“Ghost Scores” (2018)

“Ghost Scores” (2018)

“Ghost Scores” (2018)

“ASMR Étude #1” (2018)

“Ghost Box” (2018)

 

 

 



Animation Music

A Monochrome Dystopian World Holds an Eerie Beauty in New Animated Music Video for Thom Yorke

November 6, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Saad Moosajee (previously) shows the richness and emotional power that can be found in grey-scale animation with his new music video for Thom Yorke. “Last I heard (…He Was Circling the Drain)” brings Yorke’s single to life in a hazy dystopian world populated by crowds of anonymous figures. Moosajee tells Colossal that the animation is comprised of more than 3,000 individual frames. Using 3-D and 2-D animation techniques, Moosajee and the team layered over the frames, integrating crowd simulation, charcoal washing, fire simulation, and stop motion powder texturing. He partnered with Art Camp, an experimental studio based in Brooklyn, on the project and was the co-director, co-designer, and 3-D animator alongside Zuheng Yin and Jenny Mascia. See more of Moosajee’s recent work on Instagram and tune in to other music videos by Art Camp on Vimeo.

 

 



Animation Music

Forest Creatures Gather Together to Perform a Moonlit Rendition of an Opera

October 31, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

A songbird soloist accompanied by choruses of toads, turtles, and hedgehogs are conducted by  a squirrel in Maestro, a delightful new animated short by Illogic. Set in a moonlit forest, the wild symphony performs a war anthem from Vincenzo Bellini’s opera Norma. In an interview with Vimeo, the team explained that they sought to balance imaginativeness with believability within the confines of  their realistic universe. Illogic is based in Montpellier, France, where they recently opened an animation studio called Bloom Pictures. Take a behind-the-scenes look at how Maestro was made in the video below, and see more from Illogic, including the Oscar-nominated Garden Party, on Vimeo.

 

 



Animation Music

Animated Fish Swim in Mesmerizing Patterns in an Otherworldly Animated Music Video by Hideki Inaba

September 18, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Directed by Hideki Inaba (previously), Tape is a new animated music video for the Swedish group Canigou. In the approximately five minute-long animation, fish, jellyfish, and abstract bubbles swim and float in transfixing patterns through a mysterious environment. The ambiguous setting, rendered largely in shades of blue and red, seems to be set on another planet. Inaba’s animation accompanies Canigou’s atmospheric electronic sounds, creating a complementary visual and sonic landscape experience. Canigou is comprised of married duo Emma and Richard Lindström. Inaba has created live visuals for Red Hot Chili Peppers and animated for the Netflix series Disjointed. You can watch more of his work on Vimeo and tune in to Canigou on Soundcloud and Spotify.

 

 



Craft Design Music

A New Modular Paper Organ Allows Users to Build and Tune Their Own Functional Musical Instruments

September 4, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Wolfram Kampffmeyer (previously) loves to play with paper. The German artist uses the seemingly simple material to create three-dimensional shapes and figures, often designing products that users can assemble themselves. His newest project, PAPERorgan, is a fully functioning modular organ that is fueled by an inflated balloon. The instrument can run for approximately 40 seconds on one balloon’s-worth of air, and plays a range of notes depending on how each user chooses to tune and expand their organ. For paper organ aficionados, Kampffmeyer clarifies that he has spoken with fellow instrument designer Aliaksei Zholner (previously) to ensure that his design and commercial product are not derivative or competitive.

Kampffmeyer is currently building awareness for the product and will be funding production on Kickstarter. Follow along with the journey on Instagram and Facebook, and sign up for email updates on PAPERorgan’s website.

 

 

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Design Music

Paramour: A One-Shot Music Video Filmed From the Perspective of a Toy Train

August 14, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

In Ewan Jones Morris’s music video for Scottish composer and producer Anna Meredith’s music video Paramour, a toy train speeds around a series of prop-filled rooms. The train cannot be seen, because it serves as a miniature dolly for the camera strapped on top. As the camera moves around the set, musicians jump in and out of frame, entering just as they produce a dramatic cymbal crash or play a particular note on the saxophone. In addition to keyboards, guitars, and drums lining the lego track, other notable props include multiple plants, a gigantic ice cream cone, and a perfectly placed 20-sided die. The song is off of Meredith’s upcoming album FIBS which will be released October 25, 2019. You can see more music videos by the artist on her website and Youtube.