Wednesday 13 January 2010

The Orchestrion: Pat Metheny’s band of merry robots

The Orchestrion is a project by the musical robotic specialists LEMUR (League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots).

The Guardian has an interesting article of innovative jazz artist Pat Metheny and his latest recording, on which he replaces his band with music robots:

“I’ve always had a problem with electronic sound,” says Metheny. “When a whole bunch of sounds are jammed into one set of speakers, that’s not the way I hear it. I’ve been searching for some kind of acoustic expression of ideas … a means of getting something in the air moving.”

Metheny’s new album, Orchestrion, will be released on 25 January and from the beginning of February, he starts a tour across Europe. Using software called Ableton Live, he will send the preprogrammed accompaniment off on different paths each night, essentially improvising with himself. "It's fun," he says. "How much fun it's going to be in Poland when everything's breaking, I don't know."

Although I'm not really a Jazz enthusiast I've always made space for the ruminating riffs of Pat Metheny, and I think this emotionally charged band of robots will add new colors and textures to his unique jazz rhythms. I only wish the preview video was another 2-5 minutes longer, don't you ?
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