The world is richer for another – what I would call – interactive musical design toy. Before you read further be warned that this might affect your productivity once you start playing with Patatap.
Japanese pop-music duo Lullatone teamed up with Jono Brandel – who is part of Data Arts Team at Google’s Creative Lab – to create sound loops for Patatap:
Patatap is a portable animation and sound kit. With the touch of a finger create melodies charged with moving shapes. While easy to pick up there is a wide range of possibilities. Switch between multiple color palettes and matching soundscapes on the fly. Whether its on your laptop, desktop, mobile phone, or tablet Patatap invites creators of all ages to engage the mind and senses in a different type of creation process.The motivation behind Patatap is to introduce the medium of Visual Music to a broad audience. Artists working in this field vary in discipline but many aim to express the broader condition of Synesthesia, in which stimulation of one sensory input leads to automatic experiences in another. Hearing smells or seeing sounds are examples of possible synesthesia. In the case of Patatap, sounds trigger colorful visual animations.The history behind the aesthetic expression of synesthesia arose from the paintings of Piet Mondrian andWassily Kandinsky and the early videos of Viking Eggeling and Norman McLaren, to the contemporary animations of Oskar Fischinger and softwares of C.E.B. Reas. Patatap takes elements from all these visionaries and aims to present this concept in a direct way.
In order to create Patatap I worked with music composers Lullatone, the melody design unit of Shawn James Seymour and Yoshimi Seymour. Based in Nagoya, Japan, the duo have released more than 10 albums and frequently soundtrack films, commercials and more. With each sound they try to bring out the everyday wonder of overlooked moments and make the mundane seem magical.
They created compelling sounds to accompany the animations. Each color palette has a unique corpus of sounds. Each set comprises sounds that enable a full-bodied composition both in terms of sound and visuals. These sounds are geared toward making tapping as melodic as possible, similar to a keyboard of drum pads. The result is a visceral and rewarding experience.
You can play with Patatap right here in the browser, first tab/click into the gray screen below, then either press keys on your keyboard or tab onto the screen on touch devices:
Below are some of the basic shapes which are triggered by input in Patatap: