Dynamical Interactions with Electronic Instruments

Mudd, Tom; Holland, Simon; Mulholland, Paul and Dalton, Nicholas (2014). Dynamical Interactions with Electronic Instruments. In: Proceedings of the Internation Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression (Caramiaux, Baptiste; Tahiroglu, Koray; Fiebrink, Rebecca and Tanaka, Atau eds.), Goldsmiths, University of London, pp. 126–129.

URL: http://www.nime.org/2014/technical-programme/proce...


This paper examines electronic instruments that incorporate dynamical systems, where the behaviour of the instrument depends not only upon the immediate input to the instrument, but also on the past input. Five instruments are presented as case studies: Michel Waisvisz’ Crackle-box, Dylan Menzies’ Spiro, no-input mixing desk, the author’s Feedback Joypad, and microphone-loudspeaker feedback. Links are suggested between the sonic affordances of each instrument and the dynamical mechanisms embedded in them. These affordances are contrasted with those of non-dynamical instruments such as the Theremin and sample-based instruments. This is discussed in the context of contemporary, material-oriented approaches to composition and particularly to free improvisation where elements such as unpredictability and instability are often of interest, and the process of exploration and discovery is an important part of the practice.

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