Music and art adventurer Love Hultén has created a drum machine sculpture that combines acoustic drums with MIDI-controlled solenoids for a uniquely visual performance.
Love has built a number of cabinets into which he has placed a range of drums, cymbals and percussive instruments. Each cabinet has an electromagnetic solenoid mounted on the front with a drum stick placed to hit the instrument in the appropriate place. These solenoids are fired from a laptop via a MIDI-to-voltage conversion.
Drum patterns can then be programmed in a DAW and sent out to the Slagwerk array.
It seems that Love is not that enamoured with the acoustic properties of the sculpture suggesting that it might be better as a visual element in live performance that’s using samples in the DAW rather than their actual sound. Although, of course, it does make sound but I don’t imagine the handclaps really sound like they look.
It is beautifully constructed, engaging and wonderful to watch and can be arranged in all sorts of ways. I’m always excited by the prospect of another Love Hultén device and although this is less musically useful it’s still a wonder to behold.