Max Cooper is an electronic music experimenter par excellence, who puts his science-academic background to good use when he’s making art. Recently he began experimenting with 4D sound (all three spacial dimensions, plus being able to move sound through space in time) with Amsterdam-based designers Paul Oomen, Salvador Breed, Luc Van Weelden, and Poul Holleman, and now has a super-cool recording that is gonna sound pretty amazing even in your own headphone environment.
Science has a wonderful way of touching our lives and really tapping into our emotions. Take, for example, this rather inspiring instance: Jo Milne, of Gateshead, England, suffers from Usher syndrome, a genetic disorder that can cause hearing loss and visual impairment, and which made her deaf from birth, but, now at age 40, her life has taken a pretty amazing turn. With the aid of cochlear implants, she’s now able to hear for the first time, and a friend of hers videotaped the monumental moment when she heard her first sounds.
If you’re reading Beatport News, it’s likely that you aren’t afflicted by the condition known as “specific musical anhedonia,” so consider yourself lucky. A recent study led by a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Barcelona, Josep Marco-Pallerés, says that it’s possible for some people’s brains to react totally indifferently to music.
Over the years, recorded music has used a number of different media to reach the ears of listeners—from the original 78 RPM records on up to 12″ vinyl, eight-tracks, cassettes, CDs, and digital downloads. But every once in a while, an artist takes a totally divergent approach to releasing their music. Such is the case with “Saturn V,” a new production from Brooklyn trio Archie Pelago, which, in addition to being included on the group’s recent Lakeside Obelisk EP, has been released as an exploratory videogame.
A staple of Warp Records’ renowned roster and a longtime innovator in the realm of electronic music, Tom Jenkinson (aka Squarepusher) has announced that his next release will consist of five new tracks composed for and performed by a 78-fingered guitarist, a 22-armed drummer, and a “keyboard player resembling a future life form”—otherwise known as the members of the Japanese robot band Z-MACHINES.
You know when you see Olympians before their big showdowns warming up with iPod earbuds in their ears? Turns out that whatever they’re listening to, on top of getting them pumped for the event, is actually increasing their chances of performing better, studies say.
Analog synths—we all love them, but few of us know how to actually open them up and get inside their guts when something goes wrong. That’s why there are people like Philipp Heimrich in the world, an expert synth repairman who, from his Berlin synth shop PhilSynth, has managed to save a large number of 808s, Junos, and many more prized analog pieces from heading to the electronics graveyard.
Hearing—it’s a sense all music lovers hold dear. But how well do we actually hear the music we listen to? Are we able to distinguish the subtleties of stereo depth, frequency-range coloring, clipping distortion, and the like? While we’d probably all like to think that we do, now there is an online challenge that can help us prove it once and for all.
Oh, the age-old art of blowing into videogame cartridges in order to get them to actually work. Sure, it’s a skill that won’t exactly get you a job these days, but most anyone who grew up around the not-so-far-gone days of cartridge-based videogame consoles had that maneuver imprinted somewhere in their DNA years ago. Now, a Japanese electronics tinkerer by the name of Basami Sentaku (at least according to his YouTube channel) has turned that act into something a whole lot more musical, by spinning old Nintendo games into 8-bit harmonicas.