Yuri Suzuki unveils Global Sequencer

The interactive sound experience was created for Hamamatsu, Japan (a UNESCO City of Music).

Sound designer Yuri Suzuki unveiled Global Sequencer, an online platform that creates musical compositions from sounds recorded around the world.

The work was commissioned by the city of Hamamatsu in Japan, which was named UNESCO City of Music in 2014.

The goal of the project, according to its website, is to “push the boundaries of sound design”.

“2021 is a year still largely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, restricting the free movement of people and changing all of our lives,” we can read on the site. The interactive sequence hopes to “create a sense of global connection”.

“Personal connections with people around the world”

Suzuki worked with his team at Pentagram and digital consulting firm Counterpoint Studio on the project. It is inspired by traditional music sequencers, which allow people to record and play back sounds.

Through the online platform, people from different countries can record their own sounds and upload them to the site. These sounds then constitute a “central library”, explains the design team.

“The Global Sequencer represents a new way to bond with people around the world,” adds the team.

The downloaded sounds appear on the globe from which they were recorded; people can explore international locations and contributions. When sequencer mode is activated, the globe turns into a world map, divided into grids.

People can select grids for a musical sequence – “little collections of sounds,” as the designers call them. Sounds are randomly chosen from these squares, and people can choose more than one square at the same time.

These collected sounds are combined with musical sounds that represent instruments from around the world. Together, the sounds “create a unique style of music that emulates the capabilities of classic step sequencers,” explains the design team.

The sequences can be varied by “spinning the globe like a disk” and also bringing it closer and further away, the team adds.

People can also upload and post compositions online. You can try it on the Global Sequencer website.

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