Kyma 7 Soundscapes (More Internet Feedback Loops with Spectral Evolver)

Using the latency from videoconferencing software as a delay for feedback loops, this time with Kyma 7 processing the signal at both ends, creating (noisy) evolving sonic textures.

During the pandemic, conferencing software quickly became a required part of work and education culture.

Of course, this technology’s ability to keep us connected has been and important part of keeping people safe, but we’ve also discovered the quirks of this mode of communication. Being bound to this remote interaction inspires curiosity about its potential for collaborative creativity. Musicians have know for a while about the issues of internet latency in coordinating remote ensembles, but what if, instead of attempting to recreate the conditions of a traditional performance in this new medium, we embraced the “space” created by this conferencing software?

In this performance, the audio signal is sent between the two Kyma systems, creating a feedback loop.

Feedback loops, such as when we put a microphone close to a speaker, emphasize the resonant frequencies—the imperfections—of a system. As we know, the audio of conferencing software is an imperfect connection, with latency, filtering, and audio compression artifacts.

This conferencing-software feedback loop, then, emphasizes these imperfections, bringing out the character of this communication medium as an emergent soundscape.

More explanation of these pieces here:

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Interactive Holiday Noise Machine

Doing some live processing of sleigh bells in Pure Data to create an “Interactive Holiday Noise Music System.”

Since it’s mid-December, let’s make some holiday music. If you’re sick of the standard cloying Muzak fare, though, you can make your own feedback delay sample-crushing interactive music system in Pure Data in an afternoon.

The main point here is getting a “trigger” from audio input crossing a loudness threshold. Once we have that trigger, we can use it to make changes in live-processing of a sound and trigger other sounds too. This is a simple idea, but its effectiveness is going to depend on what these changes are and how we play with the system.

0:00 Demo
0:26 Introduction / Goals
1:23 Input Monitoring
2:41 Direct (“Dry”) Output
4:08 Feature Extraction with [sigmund~]
6:55 Amplitude as Trigger
8:43 Triggering Changes in Delay
12:44 Sample-Crushing
17:03 Triggering an Oscillator
19:37 Oscillators into Harmony
23:35 Putting it all together
25:33 Closing Thoughts

More experimental Christmas music: