Interactive Audio for the Web

Works and Sites


NEWWEB AUDIO API THEREMIN
by Luke Phillips (Eng)
A touch friendly & responsive audio synthesizer built in JavaScript using the Web Audio API with an HTML5 canvas. As the user interacts with the screen, synthesized sounds are generated in the style of a moog theremin and the canvas displays a visual representation of the audio.
JAVASCRIPT


NEWJUST A REFLECTOR
by Arcade Fire (Cdn)
Interactive music video from Montreal's Arcade Fire. You can use a mobile device in conjunction with a desktop/laptop, or just a desktop/laptop. Quite sophisticated in terms of interactive video for the web.
JAVASCRIPT


NEWCOLD WAR KIDS
by Nathan Willett, Jonnie Russell, Matt Maust, & Matt Aveiro (USA)
Interactive version of "I've Seen Enough". Click above to change the version of the instrumentation by the particular performer. Click the performer to turn him on/off.
FLASH


NEWTHE ARCADE FIRE
by Chris Millk & The Arcade Fire (Canada)
The Wilderness Downtown is an innovative alternative to the music video; it's a 'film' of a song called "We Used to Wait" from The Arcade Fire's album The Suburbs, which won the 2011 Grammy for best album of the year. The Arcade Fire (from Montréal) also made an earlier interactive audio piece with their song Neon Bible (in Flash).
JAVASCRIPT (HTML 5)


NEWSOUR
M Kawamura, Q Shimizu, Saqoosha, H Ono (Japan)
Mirror is a song by the Japanese band Sour. The music video is a Flash/HTML5 hybrid that requires Google Chrome (not sure why). Initially, you are prompted to connect via at least one of Facebook, webcam, or Twitter; the piece is 'personalized' by those connections.
FLASH/HTML5


PIXEL BY PIXEL
by Frédéric Durieu, Jean-Jacques Birgé, and Kristine Malden (France)
The visuals are simple, excllent, and you exercise subtle but audible influence on the music as you move the mouse and occassionally click. The relation between the audio and the visual is subtle and intriguing. Also, as audio (de) composition, this is rich. More on Durieu and Birgé (2003 profiles).
DIRECTOR


PIANOGRAPHIQUE
by Jean-Luc Lamarque (France)
Keyboard and mouse controlled aural/visual interactivity. This project has been ongoing for several years; a new piece is added at least once a year. More on Lamarque (2003 profile).
DIRECTOR


DAXO.DE
by Hans Reichel (Germany)
A dozen charmingly interactive works by the late Hans Reichel using his amazing daxophone. Performing meerkats, a history of Reichel's guitar making and typography, and more.
FLASH


ANDRE MICHELLE
by André Michelle (Germany)
André's lab of his experiments with Flash work is very interesting. Sort of like JSyn work in its granularity and wave synthesis. The audio capabilities of Flash have greatly increased over the last few years, and Andre Michelle is at the front in exploring those possibilities.
FLASH


INUDGE
by Andre Michelle (GERMANY)
A little sequencer. Compose in a 16x16 grid. Add instruments. Each instrument has its own 16x16 grid. You can make the grid bigger if you want. A Flash/HTML5 hybrid by Joshua Koo called The Tenorion was inspired by Andre Michelle's inudge.
FLASH


I SAID IF
by Lia (Austria)
Terrific generative visual and sonic piece by LIA. Click the black space. Adjust the controls at bottom. Or just let it do it's very wonderful thing. In addition to being beautiful to view, it's an intriguing and somewhat enigmatic art machine. Much more at liaworks.com.
DIRECTOR


SOUND SEEKER
by Jhave Johnston (Canada)
Sound Seeker is a "code-synch beat-match jump-edit txt-tool". Jhave says Sound Seeker is "an online real-time beat-synchronized poem animator. Sound drives the rhythm of the words: their speed and style of display can be controlled." The homepage shows twelve experimental video poems produced with Sound Seeker. Access the underlying interactive Flash app in the "Method" section. In the "Motivation" section, Jhave discusses remarks by Rudolph Arnheim concerning intermedia. A fascinating poetry, programming, video, audio, 3D animation, and theory/poetics project--and the writing is very lively on its own. A significant project in digital poetry of considerable achievement.
FLASH


JIG-SOUND
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
Link sound-icons together with blue lines to play them one after another; link them with green lines to play them simultaneously. Copy single icons or groups of icons (drag around a group to select the group).
DIRECTOR


AUDITORIUM
by Dain Saint & William Stallwood (USA)
Audio game. Musical audio flows in a visible stream. The goal is to direct the stream to hit targets. To do this, you have various tools the game provides. Lots of fun.
FLASH


F8MW9
by Jim Andrews & margareta waterman (Canada, USA)
The audio jumps around a voiced/sung recording by margareta waterman and reveals her visual "glyphs" in the process. Configure the maximum duration of the samples and click on the waveform or "glyphs" to make it play/show that part. Conceptual+experience.
DIRECTOR


FLOU
by Jason Freeman (USA)
Flou is not exactly a game; you fly a ship through space but you can't shoot things, score points, or win/lose. The focus is on the soundtrack: you navigate a 3D world and add loops and apply effects to an ever-evolving musical mix.
JAVA


NEONLIGHT
by Macoto Yanagisawa (Japan)
Move the mouse to trigger the sound, and click to go to the next piece. East meets west! Also, if you go back to work, leave this piece open; moving your mouse triggers sounds, so you get a new work environment.
DIRECTOR


PIANOLINA
by David Krause, Volker Bertelmann, Fons Hickmann, and Simon Gallus (Germany)
From the Grotrian piano company. Piano notes are represented by coloured squares that you drag and drop into a sound space affected by gravity. Similar to Balldroppings but different. "If the sequencer has become the paradigm for interpreting reality via its organization of flows of homogeneous information through a continuous scan, then the Pianolina, generator of random encounters between notes, is a good metaphor for entropy." (Valentina Culatti from neural.it)
FLASH


PÂTE À SON
by Frédéric Durieu and Jean-Jacques Birgé (France)
Click the "?" symbol at bottom right so that "Help bubbles" appear when you mouseEnter controls. Pixel by Pixel highlights and exposes the mechanisms that determine the audio composition. A different type of music than Pixel by Pixel. Also check out Time by Durieu and Birgé.
DIRECTOR


JASONFREEMAN.NET
by Jason Freeman (USA)
Several innovative pieces including Graph Theory.
VARIOUS


ALTZERO
by Squid Soup (Britain)
Squid Soup's altzero project consists of eight Shockwave works of "navigable spatial music" and a downloadable editor where you can make your own. In most pieces, you use the arrow keys and mouse to navigate 3D spaces; where you go determines the audio. The audio is original and highly atmospheric, goes well with the unusual visual environments.
DIRECTOR


THESQUAREROOTOF-1
by James Tindall (Britain)
thesquarerootof-1 is an online audio-visual interactive 'album'. Modifyme is also worth a look, and there's work on Tindall's atomless.com he's done for Fat Boy Slim etc.
DIRECTOR/FLASH


RE-MOVE
by Lia (Austria)
Many of the RE-MOVE pieces involve strong interactive audio, strong in its audio, visuals, and interactivity.
DIRECTOR


GRANULAR
by Chris Savage (UK)
Type something in and a sound is retrieved that relates to your query. Granular does something interesting with the retrieved sound. "Granular Synthesis creates new sounds from 'grains' of other sounds often as short as 10ms. The grains get reorganised (often offsetting the pitch) and the result is unpredictable, evolving sounds with vague characteristics of the original." Also check out his site Japanese Freeware.
DIRECTOR


VISMU
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
Assorted works.
DIRECTOR


In Bb 2.0
by Darren Solomon (USA)
20 Youtube videos arranged in a 5x4 grid. Play them as you please. Each one consists of a different instrument and different recording in Bb (B flat).
HTML/YOUTUBE VIDEO


AUDIOTOOL
by Andre Michelle and friends (Germany)
This is the most sophisticated online audio tool I've seen. There are a couple of tutorials at youtube on how to use it. The lead developer of this is Andre Michelle, who has an interesting online 'lab' of his experiments. Andre Michelle appears to be the Flash audio programming guru.
FLASH


LOOPLABS.COM
by Craig Swan & friends (Canada)
Looplabs offers an online tool similar to Andre Michelle's Audiotool. This lets you layer and sequence sounds and mix and save and share them. Developed by crashmedia.com
FLASH


SONOPORT.COM
by Lonce Wyse, Gerry Beauregard & friends (Singapore)
Sonoport.com is a company developing audio products with ActionScript 3.0. Their AudioStretcher and AudioExtender look very promising, though are currently in development. What they offer for sale, currently, are specific, dynamic sounds (distributed as SWC files) generated with ActionScript and controlled via an API where the programmer can change parameters at run-time. Audio on the web is going to change quite a bit over the next few years, and you can see this in the work sonoport and Andre Michelle are doing.
FLASH


PANDORA
by Tim Westergren, Tom Conrad, Nolan Gasser... (USA)
Fascinating approach to Internet radio. You create a channel by specifying a song or artist. Pandora then starts playing songs related to your seed. Each song is classified according to the 'music genome project'. Your 'thumbs up/thumbs down' on suggested songs apparently 'train' the app. A similar project is called last.fm. Unfortunately, as of 2007, their license disallows them from serving anyone outside the USA.
FLASH


NANOENSEMBLES
by Antoine Schmitt (France)
Also check out Venus and his projects page. More on Schmitt (2003 profile).
DIRECTOR


SERVOVALVE
by Servovalve (France)
The music is, as he says, "electronic, rhythmic, energic, atmospheric, horologic (clock connected), meta-lithurgic... subambient... neurodance" and the visuals, set in the black background, derive their energy not at all from ornament but from their motion with the music and their programming-controlled transformations and movement. More on Servovalve (2003 profile)
DIRECTOR


NETART.ORG.UY
by Brian Mackern (Uruguay)
Brian Mackern has created many "sound toys". Look for that term on his homepage and click those links. Also, there are many links to the work of others on Brian's site.
FLASH


GLASS ENGINE
by Phillip Glass and IBM (USA)
Navigate the music of Phillip Glass by work, year, length, joy, sorrow, intensity, density, and velocity.
JAVA


LA COLONIE
by Alexandre Gherban (France)
"Our preoccupation is to define a particular field of study based on the hypothesis that underlying the artistic universe are connections as highly ordered as those found in life, although much less obvious. First starting from a "common trunk"—artificial life—it is then a question of separating the "colony" from any simplistic simulation of life, of exploring all the possibilities of an aesthetic universe that coincides with no preexisting model. To envisage aesthetically specific situations in which the materials (the programming) create forms and situations artistically relevant within a consistent and constantly renewed digital framework. A "colony," therefore, which takes as its starting point elementary living situations (as posited by artificial life) to go toward an artistic zone specifically defined by the digital universe: in other words, toward observable transitory forms." See also the other works on Gherban's site.
DIRECTOR


WORKS FROM ARTZERO.NET
by Vera Sylvia Bighetti (Brazil)
Made to (Un)Order is a suite of 6 interactive audio pieces. A mixture of the tuneful and the electronic. Also check out Fulfill Fullness.
DIRECTOR


DIRTY PUNK FUCKIN' ANARCHY MACHINE
by Zanorg.com (France)
Seven high-energy interactive works: Dirty Punk Fuckin' Anarchy Machine; The indian shankar drum ganesh machine; L'Automachine; Medieval Music Mixer; Salut à toi, la machine; Hyperactive machine; and The psychedelic supperdubber machine from outer space. These are keyboard and mouse interactive works. Really well done!
FLASH


ACTIONIST RESPOKE
by Michael Janoschek and Rüdiger Schlömer, Mouse on Mars (Germany)
"Here is something between a Sequencer and Sound Tamagotchi. Put some learning effort into it, don't let visuals irritate you and most of all, don't be lazy. This is not about just sitting back and having music served on a tablet." The music is funky and so is the interface. MAX on acid.
FLASH


SPLICE
by S. Mulroney, W. Davis (USA)
Sequencer for mixing your own sounds or sounds uploaded by people in the Splice community. A similar project is called JamGlue.
FLASH


LOOPTRACKS
by Conor O'Boyle (Ireland)
What is striking here is the interactive interface. O'Boyle describes it as "an interactive music video". Part of the idea of many interactive audio works for the Web is to try to do something alternative to the music video. Though of course there are also other fish to fry in interactive audio, such as innovative music.
FLASH


FOLK SONG FOR THE FIVE POINTS
by David Gunn, Alastair Dant, Tom Davis, Victor Gama (USA)
"Folk Songs for the Five Points is a celebration of cultural diversity and change, using “folk songs” as a metaphor to explore immigration and the formation of identity in New York’s Lower East Side." Click and drag the circles. Most interactive audio pieces focus on exploring audio/music and interface. The exploration here is more of geography and culture. Also check out a later piece, Manchester: Peripheral, which treats Manchester in related ways. "Manchester: Peripheral" is the second in what is planned as a series of "SoundMaps" for cities across the world.
FLASH


SOUND GARDEN
by babel & binnorie (Cdn & USA)
Gently mouse over this piece for layers of animated flowers and layers of vocals by binnorie. also check out "strAngel" for another collaboration between babel & binnorie.
FLASH


VERTICE.CA
Andrew Watson (Canada)
Interactive surround sound tableaus. "A sound tableau is an interactive surround sound composition that allows you to control the sounds you hear with, in this case, your mouse."
FLASH


SiON
by Keim (Japan)
SiON is a fantastic audio tool for online audio. Whether you are a Flash developer or a JavaScript developer, you can use this library to create very impressive dynamic work. Be sure to check out the Examples. My faves were the Active Sonar Sequencer, the SiON Kaoscillator, and the SiON SoundObject Quartet.
FLASH


MOBIL_IZING
by Delirious Lazyness — Giselle Beiguelman, Marcus Bastos, Rafael Marchetti (Brazil)
mobil_izing is a webdjaying system based on an open multi-user database for online sampling. All content—images, sounds, texts, films and audio— portray traffic and flux situations. It is fed by its users and promotes a collective remix process in real time on the web and in exhibition spaces.
FLASH/PHP


SOUNDTOYS.NET
curated by Stanza (Britain)
An ongoing anthology of interactive sound works and a collection of writings on sound. See also a profile of Stanza.
VARIOUS


STICKY SOUND ELASTIC STRUCTURE
by Santiago Ortiz (Colombia)
Charming 3D geometrical sonic animism. Also see Ortiz's other interactive sonic works.
FLASH


WIND CHIME MARIMBA
by Rob Wright & Richard Polfreman (UK)
Aleatoric music composition. The brown circles represent marimba samples of different pitches. Notes are triggered when brown circles collide with the other objects. These other objects modify the nature of the sound played.
FLASH


NEWMODULAR SYNTH
by MIT (USA)
Influence (along with others) a big analog synth MIT has hooked up to the internet.
????


SODACONDUCTOR
by David Muth (audio prog), Ed Burton & Soda (UK)
The popular SodaConstructor by Ed Burton & Soda, where you construct nodal critters, includes a beta with interactive sound by David Muth.
JSYN (JAVA)


STUDIO TONNE
by Paul Farrington (England)
Paul Farrington has done interactive Flash work for Depeche Mode, Moby, Scanner, and various other bands and labels.
FLASH


ARCANGEL CONSTANTINI
by A. Constantini & Alvaro Ruiz (Mexico)
Also check out his bakteria.org.
FLASH


SOUND POEMS
by Jörg Piringer (Austria)
Interactive automata sound poems.
FLASH


DARWINSTRUMENTS
by Jeremy Thorp (Canada)
"Better sound through evolution." You listen to sounds, pick two you like, and then click the "Hybridize" button. The app then generates new sounds that are hybrids of the two you choose. Sex between sounds.
FLASH


EKPUROSIS
by Xavier Pehuet (France)
Ekpurosis is "universal regeneration"; many visual and auditory movements. Visuals done with Imaging Lingo.
DIRECTOR


P-SOUP
by Mark Napier, John Maxwell Hobbes, and Kees van den Doel (USA)
Waves of interactive pure tones and colour/shapes. This was made when Java could only handle 8-bit sound..
JAVA


CTRALTDEL.ORG
by Peter Luining (Netherlands)
Peter Luining's site of Shockwave interactives; uses short sounds, rectilinear graphics; many net art audio works.
VARIOUS


IXI SOFTWARE
by Thor Magnusson (Iceland) & friends
A group collaborating on the creation of downloadable Shockwave technology and music. You download their tools and use them to create music and visuals.
DIRECTOR


MOODSTREAM
by Getty Images (USA)
Streams videos, images and music. The controls let you adjust what mood you want the overall composition to have. Adjust it from happy to sad, calm to lively, humorous to serious, nostalgic to contemporary, and warm to cool.
FLASH


SONGSMITH
by Dan Morris, Sumit Basu, Ian Simon (USA)
Sing into a microphone or play an instrument into it and this product of Microsoft Research apparently helps you create a song from it. The promo video reaches Limburger on the stinky cheese slider scale. Someone ran David Lee Roth vocals through Songsmith here.
C++?


CLOCK DIN
by Gord High & friends (Canada)
Trigger loops (which keep playing) or shots (which play once). Decomposed songs by Gord High, Ken Toba, Beatrix12, Torisu Koshiro, Geordie Wilson, and more.
FLASH


REPERCUSSION
by Carla Diana (USA)
A collection of 3D virtual instruments. The interface is the interesting thing here. Visually well-designed Flash 3D.
FLASH


AUDIOGAME.NET
by Marc Em (France)
A suite of amusing audio toys.
FLASH


PICTUREDISKO
by Mario Klingemann (Germany)
Scratch images from flickr.com that get transformed from images into MIDI sounds. PC only.
FLASH/PROCESSING


COMPOUND PILOT
by Jonathan Zalben and M. Jones (USA)
Flash works. See also the downloadable MAX work for Mac.
FLASH


MYTUNE=MYPOLLOCK
by CJ Yehs (USA/Taiwan)
Select a colour. Then use the keyboard (Q,W,E,R,T,Y,U,I) to create a tune and a Pollockish bitmap.
FLASH


BLONK ORGAN
by Jaap Blonk and friends (Netherlands)
Japp Blonk is a famous sound poet and writer. This work is from 1997, making it one of the first interactive sound poems on the Web.
DIRECTOR


VOCALEYES
by Maria Mencia (UK)
Drawing curves causes audio. You can switch colors and sounds.
DIRECTOR


BALLDROPPINGS
by Josh Nimoy (USA)
"Balls fall from the top of the screen and bounce off the lines you are drawing with the mouse. The balls make a percussive and melodic sound, whose pitch depends on how fast the ball is moving when it hits the line."
JSYN/PROCESSING (Java)


SOUNDMAPS
by Jan de Weille (France)
A downloadable executable for PC's.
"Soundmaps makes music out of your desktop actions. Soundmaps translates a part of the bitmap image on your desktop into sound. Drawing, typing, surfing, playing a movie etc. will constantly change the sound. Hence, you can make your own music while working."
C++


NEON BIBLE
by Vincent Morisset & friends (Canada)
An original song with terrific visual interactivity—much better than a typical music video. Also check out Vincent's site vincentmorisset.com for other projects.
FLASH


ELECTRICA
by Gundula Markeffsky, Peter Huehlfriedel, Leonard Schaumann (Germany)
If you can get this working, this is terrific. Uses the Beatnik plugin. Supplies a link to an installable exe of the plugin, and requires Netscape 4. I installed the plugin and installed Netscape 4.72 but couldn't get it working on my Windows XP system. But I tell ya this is/was one of the most exciting interactive sound works for the Web. A crying shame it's so hard to get working now!
BEATNIK/MIDI
 

Writings & Video


Proposed HTML Audio API
by David Humphrey, Corban Brook, Al MacDonald, Yury Delendik (Intl)
A document outlining proposed audio enhancements to HTML. So that one could do with JavaScript what it now takes Flash to do. Check out David Humphrey's blog for demos.


Sonic Wire Sculptor
by Amit Pitaru (USA)
A video of the Sonic Wire Sculptor, an interactive music piece by Amit Pitaru for the iPhone (2010). There's also a video of an earlier version (2003).


Chance & Necessity: About Sound-Based Web Works
by Anne-Marie Boisvert (Canada)
The online arts magazine of the Centre International d'art Contemporain de Montréal (CIAC) did an issue in 2002 on sound-based web works. Anne-Marie Boisvert, the editor, wrote a thoughtful introductory essay on the subject.


ABOUT JIG-ARTEROIDS
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
An introduction to and essay about Jig-Arteroids, which is an interactive audio piece I wrote in Director (2009).


INTERACTIVE AUDIO FOR THE WEB
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
I wrote this after putting these links together (2006). A look at interactive audio for the Web as an art form.


NIO AND THE ART OF INTERACTIVE AUDIO FOR THE WEB
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
A 2001 essay.


TECHNOTES ON NIO AND AUDIO PROGRAMMING WITH DIRECTOR
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
A 2002 essay on how the Nio programming was done in Director.


INTERACTIVE AUDIO ON THE WEB
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
A 2003 essay on the elements of interactive audio on the Web. Many of the links don't work anymore, but the ideas still work.


NEWTHE BLOOM IPHONE APP BY BRIAN ENO
Brian Eno (UK)
A video that shows someone playing with the lovely Bloom app.


NEWAURA FLUX APP FOR IPHONE AND IPAD
John Whitmore (UK)
Interesting video showing someone play with the Aura Flux app. See also Whitmore's site where there are more interactive audio apps.


SOUNDTOYS.NET ESSAYS AND OTHER WRITINGS
many authors (International)
A large collection of writing on sound art and computer audio.


NETART.ORG.UY WRITING LINKS
many authors (International)
Scroll down in the linked doc and you'll find a section called ref.theory.links, which links to various writings on audio art and technology.


INTERNET RADIO
by Jim Andrews (Canada)
Links to and thoughts on Internet radio, which is a more interesting 'band' than the regular radio band.


YOUTUBE ON INTERACTIVE MUSIC
by various (International)
There are quite a few interesting videos at youtube.com concerning offline interactive music projects. In particular, have a look at Reactable.


1995 VIDEO ON INTERACTIVE MUSIC
S. O'Brien, D. Fox, S. Cheifet (USA)
A 1995 episode of the TV show The Computer Chronicles on interactive music. Interesting to see what it was like in 1995. Demonstrations include Vid Grid, Sound Toy, William Orbit Strange Cargo, So You Want to be a Rock & Roll Star, Rock & Roll On Your Own, Dylan:Highway 61 Interactive, Video Jam, and Vivace. Also featured is a visit to Todd Rundgren's sound studio.
 

Other news sources


NEWVIRTUAL MUSEUM OF SOUND TOYS
by David Holmes
An extensive collection of links to online interactive works and much else.


DATABASE AUDIO
by Mark Hadley (UK)
Links to "online instruments", "music applications", and "plugins". Not sure if there is anything here newer than 2006 (when the project started).


URZHIATA
by emoc (France)
Great collection of links to online interactive sonic works.


GRATIN.ORG
by Antoine Schmitt (France)
Links to works and resources concerning algorithmic art. Not all the links concern sonic art, but there are good ones here that do.


VISUALMUSIC.BLOGSPOT.COM
by Maura McDonnell (Ireland)
A blog on visual music. Lots of great links and videos--for instance, to a video by Varese & Le Corbusier called Poeme electronique from 1958.


NEURAL.IT
by Alessandro Ludovico (Italy)
Whenever new works of interactive audio on the net are made, they often show up here first. Scroll through neural.it looking for works labelled "e-music". Some of them are Web-based.


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