Category Archives: DMI

Jimmy raps



Jimmy raps is a 20-minute audiovisual composition during which a “rap” is put on display via gestures (instrumental, typographical, spatial, epistemic, ancillary, etc.), which are given tangible form through the use of a biosignal interface and the browser-based textual performance and visualisation interface known as Live Writing (Lee, 2015). Live Writing is a web browser-based textual performance and visualisation interface using Javascript, Web Audio, WebGL and OpenGL Shading Language. It features dynamic and animated text rendering, allowing the performer to explore a potential for visual and musical expression through the creation of live poetry, live electroacoustic sound and temporal typography. The MYO biosignal interface is an electromyography armband with additional inertial measurement sensing (3DoF accelerometer; 3DoF gyroscope).

Live writing interface created by Sang Won Lee
livewriting.github.io

The MYO developed by Thalmic Labs
myo.com

Méta-instrument



Immortal-machine is my first solo work for the méta-instrument digital musical instrument. The instrument features forty-six discrete pressure-sensing ‘keys’ or touch points, thumb sliders, pivoting hand grips (measuring hand rotation) and elbow ‘ball and socket’ joints (measuring the horizontal and vertical movements of the forearms over an angle of ninety degrees) – fifty-four channels of continuous control data, in total. In composing and performing my composition, I am interested in investigating whether the concept of an ‘immortal machine’ is an appropriate analogy for the human body. Important aspects of Immortal-machine are, on the one hand, a contextualisation of the human body as a hyper-body (‘hyper’ referring to the tradition of the hyperinstrument or metainstrument) and, on the other hand, the drawing out of possible ‘superhuman’ capabilities and higher-level corporeal models through a reinterpretation of the human body in relation to its surrounding environment. My work with the méta-instrument is aimed at furthering my ideas on concurrence and counteraction in digital musical instrument composition.

“Thank you Darryl, for your help re-soldering and calibrating.”

Karlax

The karlax resembles a clarinet or soprano saxophone in size and geometry, although its control structures do no involve blowing air through the instrument. Instead, the karlax wirelessly transmits data to a sound engine (e.g., computer software instrument) by manipulating 10 keys (with continuous range output), 8 velocity-sensitive pistons, 17 buttons and a combination mini-joystick and LCD character display, operated with the thumb of the left hand. The interior of the karlax contains both a 3-axis gyroscope and 3-axis accelerometer. In addition, the upper and lower half of the karlax can be twisted in opposite directions; that is to say, the upper and lower half can be rotated in opposite directions because the joint between the two halves of the instrument acts as a type of rotary potentiometer with a maximum rotation angle of 65°. Furthermore, at each angle boundary (i.e., 0° and 65°), the karlax offers an additional 12.5° of resistive twist space, providing a resistive force for the performer, who may have a sensation similar to bending or pulling a spring – albeit the movement is still a twisting/turning motion.

Development on the karlax began in 2001.  This digital musical instrument has been commercially available since approximately the mid-2000s and is manufactured by DA FACT, in Paris, France.

For more information and performance footage:



T-Stick

The sensor-based t-stick digital musical instrument, which was invented in 2006, offers great potential for virtuosic control over a diverse range of sounds and musical materials, as well as promising new forms of musical and gestural expression. The t-stick has been designed and constructed to permit a unique variety interaction techniques such as: touching, gripping, brushing, tapping, shaking, squeezing, jabbing, swinging, tilting, rolling, and twisting. As a result, a significant emphasis is placed on the gestural vocabulary required to manipulate and manoeuvre the instrument. The musical experience for both the performer and audience is characterised by a notable engagement between performer body and instrument.

The t-stick project grew out of a collaborative undertaking by music technologist Joseph Malloch and composer/digital instrumentalist D. Andrew Stewart at the Input Devices and Music Interaction Laboratory and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music, Media and Technology (McGill University), in cooperation with performers as part of the interdisciplinary McGill Digital Orchestra project.

The ongoing development of the t-stick family is a result of continuing institutional and public support. To date, the t-stick has been presented in Canada, Mexico, Norway, the USA, Brazil, Argentina, Portugal and Korea Republic.

For more information and performance footage: