James Boock's 3-way sound system puts the performance back into music

Royal College of Art graduate James Boock has designed a sound system, which allows listeners to see how music is created by making it a more tangible process.

Sound Revival, by Royal College of Art graduate James Boock, is a range of objects designed for musicians. It is used to create sound visually when performing. Sound Revival puts the performance back into live music by visually reacting to four digital sounds. They are used in musical performances to produce an engaging experience and unique sound.

Because the process of making music is often concealed within a computer or processor, the design aims to create a greater understanding of how sound effects are generated and give a visual identity to the unseen. The objects also result in a performance that brings the listener and performer together.

Boock’s four objects account for four different sound effects: tremolo, reverb, delay, and voice modulation.
The reverb is created using converters and springs. The audio signal is sent up the spring, collected at the other end and transferred to the output. The structure and material qualities of the spring create the reverberation.
The tape delay machine records music on magnetic tape then plays it back on multiple tape heads at slightly different times.
A rotating the sound output creates the Tremolo or rotating effect. The rotator moves the sound around at multiple speeds, which creates a perception of increasing and decreasing volume.
Voice Modulation uses a compression technique: The sound made from an instrument is channelled out of an airtight speaker through a tube, which is placed into the user’s mouth. Movement of the mouth then modulates the output sound. Boock collaborated with musician Matt Fletcher, who plays for the band GEF to design the devices which alter sound the same way a digital tool might.

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