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  • Writer's pictureTobi

Electronic Silent Night : A Very Merry Robot Christmas

Introduction: Credible Fun

Electronic instruments lend themselves so easily to moody soundscapes, dystopian sonics, and sound design of darkly cinematic intent, it would have been ever so tempting to concoct a rendition of “Silent Night” adrift in ill-defined shifting ambients, brooding sub bass pulse, brittle piano, and augmented vocal tones drenched in echo and reverb.  Fatalism in self-expression often proves to be a fast track to achieving the mantle of artist credibility, while optimism tends to be a much longer path, and creative endeavors made purely for fun are seldom even considered.

Two Robots in the Snow

Chapter One:  Quirky Respect

With so much horror in the world right now, producing an upbeat rendition of “Silent Night” felt inescapable.  The challenge was to create a version that felt respectful to the tone of the composition, rather than derisory, a version that was quirky but not parody.  With this in mind, careful attention was paid to the timing of the melody and supporting harmonies.  As was the case when selecting the various tones and textures of the instruments.  The production is worked across the stereo-field, but not overly so.  The use of FXs is, for the most part, sparse, allowing the melody space to breathe.  When the use of FXs does become more dominant, it is done to punctuate the track’s beginning, middle, and end; thereby, providing a frame for the melody.

Two Robots out for Christmas Drinks

Chapter Three: An Abandoned Land

Although very much made for fun, and not intended as an official release, “Silent Night” does represent another step towards me becoming a multimedia artist.  I very much want music and video to exist in a mutual back-and-forth within my creative process.  Working with AI generated image and video has allowed me to return to a land I thought I’d long since abandoned.  I studied Film and Video making at Art College.  Very much a story for another blog post, but it has been twenty years since I last made a film.  Thanks to the extraordinary leaps forward in generative video, I have been able to take tiny steps back into a world I thought lost to me.  The old cinematic muscles have atrophied over time, but little by little I feel them coming back to life.     

Robot Toasting Christmas Marshmallows

Conclusion: A Very Merry Robot Christmas

Much in keeping with my rendition of "Silent Night”, the accompanying video is quirky and fun.  In it we imagine an electronic silent night, a very merry robot Christmas.  There is great creative delight to be found in what AI will conjure out of ones and zeros.  Every possibility of your imagination is obtainable, though not always reliable at this fledgling stage.  As the year rolls over into its next twelve month cycle, it is inevitable that we reflect upon where we stand, what lies behind us and what might await us next.  And what a moment in history to be stood upon, for isn’t the world such a mess of potential wonder and horror.  2024 will, no doubt, bring us much of both, and these seismic extremes will inspire great excitement and fear in us all.

With so much noise all around us, we might try to be a little quieter ourselves, if only to hear the noise within us a little better.  And perhaps, the noise inside others too? 

Robots at Office Christmas Party


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Kip Braunstadter
Kip Braunstadter

really cool


Thanks! A bit of fun for the holidays... more of this kind of thing to come in the New Year. Hope you and your family had a happy and healthy Christmas!

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