Interdependent Urbanism is a architectural and urban research project by Project : Architecture. It looks toward computation as an essential tool to augment the increasingly complex design process of cities where a myriad of factors must be considered simultaneously.
I’m not sure why architects are always waiting till the last minute to make deadlines, but my alter-ego gave me 5 hours to complete the soundtrack and voice over to this video. The electric piano backdrop was easy. As soon as I plugged in my gear and started recording a take while watching the video, my cat jumped onto the keyboard creating a semi-dissonant ‘kerplunk.’ That was it! An energized, rhythmic theme to match the video’s concepts of ‘computation,’ ‘voxels,’ and ‘customization’ (The piano comping will be featured in a new tune mussi).
Just as I thought I was miles ahead in quickly laying down the music, the voice over was a different story. Having just got back into singing, I was overly confident that speaking would be easy. Well it’s not, and now I realize why great voiceover artists are highly trained and sought after professionals. While the act of singing matches melody to the music, narration must stand starkly in the foreground while maintaining pace (no umm’s or even slight awkward pauses), inflection (overdo it just enough so you’re not overdoing it), pronunciation (we should have heeded the criticism of our grade-school teachers), and personality (who the heck am I anyway?). It’s both a physically and mentally ambidextrous art and those that have mastered it deserve many props.
Even though I claim to be a multi-instrumentalist, I can now definitively say that I have no future in reciting poetry or radio… But don’t listen too closely – it’s better to just watch. The ideas in the video are very cool (I can brag when my alter-ego is not around) and have been internationally published and discussed including in the book Ecological Urban Architecture by Thomas Schroepfer. And to see more work where machine learning, music, and architecture come together, the Cloud interactive sculpture where I performed the sound effects and whispered eco-doom secrets may also be of interest…