- “Quartet Automata” is a collection of six minimal ambient generative compositions, following on the heels of 2010’s “Photic” release, and the “Gagaku” generative app. On ” . . . Automata” each piece was performed using a generative music system built in Max/MSP with the concept of a music box in mind. “Quartet” refers to the instrumentation–just four instruments/sound generators, whether analog mono synths, treated piano, etc. were used on any given piece.
A big influence on the release is the concept of Erik Satie’s “furniture music”. This album ideally would be played in the background, just “barely on” . . .
The tracks on this release represent a single captured performance of each composition as it was created live, but a generative desktop Max app (Mac) of the album is also available for download with the link provided in the bonus item PDF.
How did this project use Max?
I'm a bit of a noob with Max admittedly--have been studying it for a mere 3 years now. I began making the basic patch used in this project pretty much as soon as I started experimenting with Max. My other two related projects, "Photic" and "Gagaku" use a variation of this same patch--a rather messy, convoluted approach to generative music-making, that I keep piling things on top of.
In this instance, the patch is used to create the various pieces using a combination of sample playback, synthesis (within Max), and triggering an analog synth. The downloadable app that is mentioned above has the live synth bits rendered to samples of course (it's a big download).
In the end, I just hope people will put it on in the background and do the dishes or wind down their day.