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Music / Animusic

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Animusic is a two-man company that uses software they've developed to make computer animations out of MIDI-based music. The movement is determined by the MIDI files, rather than animators. In Layman's Terms, digital sheet music goes in, music and computer animation comes out.

Animusic have released two DVDs of their works, a single, "Glarpedge", and a third DVD, consisting of 8 songs, is in development. And has been since 2012.

Animusic: A Computer Animation Video Album:

  • "Future Retro"
  • "Stick Figures"
  • "Aqua Harp"
  • "Drum Machine"
  • "Pipe Dream"
  • "Acoustic Curves"
  • "Harmonic Voltage"

Animusic 2: A New Computer Animation Video Album:

  • "Starship Groove"
  • "Pogo Sticks"
  • "Resonant Chamber"
  • "Cathedral Pictures"
  • "Pipe Dream 2"
  • "Fiber Bundles"
  • "Gyro Drums"
  • "Heavy Light"

This series contains examples of:

  • Acceptable Breaks from Reality: As Lampshaded and Justified by Wayne. A majority of the instruments likely wouldn't move the same way or work as well (if at all) in real life.
  • Activation Sequence: "Future Retro" opens with each of the instruments powering up before the song starts.
  • Alien Sky: "Heavy Light" has quite a few of the gas giants float around in the background.
    • The sky in "Resonant Chamber" appears to contain multiple moons.
  • All-CGI Cartoon: All of the animations are computer generated.
  • Ambiguous Gender: Discussed in the directors commentary on the second DVD. Wayne is open to the possibility of the red robot from Starship Groove identifying as female.
  • Art Evolution: The instruments slowly get more character-like with each passing installment.
    • Animusic: The most character-like thing is Mr. Stick from "Stick Figures", a self-playing Chapman Stick with 2 arms. Although there are self-playing violins which also have two arms, Mr. Stick stands out for having the most arm movement of any instrument in the album. Although he is only shown doing things that lead to playing music.
    • Animusic 2:
      • "Starship Groove" has 5 humanoid robots that not only play music, but also nod their heads and move to the beat. The red robot also sticks their arms in the air when they're not playing.
      • "Pogo Sticks" has seven instruments like Mr. Stick with two armsnote , all of which move up and down to the beat.
      • Downplayed with "Gyro Drums". The previous all-percussion piece, "Drum Machine", had nearly every instrument get its own stick. "Gyro Drums" meanwhile has three drummer robots play the whole song, although the maracas remain self-playing.
    • Concept art from Animusic 3 shows several pipe robots which dance, but don't play music.
  • Bizarchitecture: Most of the videos qualify.
  • Bizarre Instrument: Many videosnote  feature lasers and other lights that tilt left and right to change pitch.
    • "Heavy Light" takes this a step further by having the instruments built into the building.
  • Bottomless Pits: Used in "Drum Machine", "Acoustic Curves", and "Gyro Drums".
    • However, a floor is implied in Drum Machine (especially in the solo cam that shows all the gears), and the split-screen view of Gyro Drums shows a small circular light base which doesn't appear in the main animation.
  • Clock Punk: "Resonant Chamber" features a massive, composite stringed instrument that looks like something out of Leonardo da Vinci's imagination and plays itself with jointed mechanical fingers.
  • Concept Art Gallery: Included as a bonus feature on the DVDs.
  • Easter Egg: On the Animusic 2 DVD, there is a hidden loop button to the right of the main buttons.
  • Ethereal Choir: Used in "Beyond the Walls", "Future Retro", "Fiber Bundles", and "Heavy Light".
  • Frame Break: In the multi-view of "Resonant Chamber", some of the instruments appear in front of the lines that divide them. They are the 4-string autoharpnote , 4-string tapped guitarnote , and the 8-string guitarnote 
  • Funny Background Event: In "Starship Groove", whenever the red robot finishes any of their pieces for the song, they wobble slightly to the rhythm and hold their arms out as if they're pleased with themself.
  • Genre Shift: Often happens in the middle of a song.
  • Gratuitous Panning: Used to great effect in the surround mix of "Gyro Drums".
  • Hard Light: "Heavy Light" and "Fiber Bundles", both throw balls of light at the percussion instruments.
  • Heavy Meta: "Acoustic Curves".
  • Longest Song Goes Last: In both animated albums.
    • Animusic: "Harmonic Voltage" is the last song, as well as the only one on the album to exceed 6 minutes (by 35 seconds).
    • Animusic 2: "Heavy Light" is the longest song. Including the silent credits, it lasts 7 minutes 16 seconds. Excluding them, it is 6:27, beating "Cathedral Pictures" by 9 seconds.
  • Mood Whiplash: Most of "Resonant Chamber", sounds more standard with normal elements like chord progressions. However, the bridge is a lot wackier than the rest of the song, reflecting how unusual the instrument looks.
  • The Oner: "Drum Machine" is the only song to have a video made of one shot.
  • One-Wheeled Wonder: The drum robots in "Beyond The Walls" and all the instruments in "Pogo Sticks" stand on two wheel side by side, allowing them to lean forward and backwards.
  • Paddleball Shot: "Beyond the Walls" was originally made in stereoscopic 3D, and frequently moves things close to the camera. The first instrument blows bubbles at the camera, and the last shot has various instruments taking turns moving towards the camera.
  • "Pan Up to the Sky" Ending: This is how "Stick Figures" ends, with the camera panning up to the starry night sky as the song fades out. It also serves as a transition to the next song, "Aqua Harp," with the camera panning down to reveal the set, and the conclusion of this song features a pan-up to the same starry sky as before.
  • Piano Key Wave: "Starship Groove", played with Yamaha's Disklavier piano.
  • Pipe Maze: Around the rooms in the music videos for "Pipe Dream" and "Pipe Dream 2" (using the exact same instruments)
  • Progressive Instrumentation: A staple of Animusic, occurring in basically every song.
  • Recurring Riff: The last quarter of "Symphonica" borrows the leitmotif of "Resonant Chamber" for several measures.
  • Rock Me, Amadeus!: "Cathedral Pictures" contains excerpts from Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition", specifically "Promenade", "The Hut on Fowls Legs", and "The Great Gate of Kiev", all arranged for an organ, an electric bass, and drums.
  • Rube Goldberg Device: The instruments in "Pipe Dream" have shades of this, such as the guitar-bongo combo that is played by having a ball bounce multiple times across its body, or the xylophone that's played by shooting a ball at a bar that is being transported by rail to the right position at the right time.
  • Series Mascot: A self-playing Chapman stick called "Mr. Stick", first appearing in "Stick Figures" and later on in "Pogo Sticks", the latter case with two strings.
  • Shout-Out: According to Word of God, "Fiber Bundles" was done In the Style of the music from Ratchet & Clank.
  • Signature Style:
    • Combining the natural with the bizarre; robots playing otherwise traditional instruments seems to be a favorite.
    • Humans never being seen is one of the most overarching aspects of the Animusic signature style. When the instruments aren't being played by robots, they play themselves.
  • Single-Task Robot:
    • The drummer robot in "Future Retro" has four arms that move around a circle and hit the different drums, with "Gyro Drums" having more advanced versions of it. "Cathedral Pictures" has a similar set of arms play a marimba.
    • "Starship Groove" shows five humanoid robots using their hands to play instruments, although none of them have legs. Only the blue and red ones demonstrate an ability to move along the stage.
  • Slow Electricity: In "Harmonic Voltage", while the arc tower has fast electricity, it has a moment when it makes an Audible Sharpness sound near the beginning, with sparks cascading off the two rails. The background towers also have rings of electricity fall and disappear.
  • Slow Laser:
    • Although averted for the most part, "Heavy Light" shows drops of light falling into drums.
    • "Fiber Bundles" has the light moving at a visible pace inside of fiber optics.
  • Space Is Noisy: "Starship Groove" is performed in on top of a ship in space.
  • Split Screen: The multi-view of "Resonant Chamber" has all 6 of its string instruments in separate boxes.
  • Stealth Pun: "Seventh Alloy" is a metal song in the 7/4 timeframe.
  • Truck Driver's Gear Change: In "Acoustic Curves" note , "Seventh Alloy" note , and "Harmonic Voltage" note .
  • Uncommon Time:
    • "Beyond the Walls" ends with 7/4 time.
    • Animusic 1:
      • Most of "Seventh Alloy" is in 7/4 time.
      • The second half of "Drum Machine" is in 10/4 time, split as 4-4-2.
    • Animusic 2:
      • "Starship Groove" is entirely in 7/4 time. The video features pylons which flash to illustrate the 7 beats in a score.
      • The "chorus" parts of "Resonant Chamber" are in 5/4.
      • "Gyro Drums" has parts in 5/4 and 11/4.
      • The majority of Heavy Light is in 15/4, counted as 8/4 + 7/4.
  • Visual Pun: In "Pogo Sticks" the points where the instruments go under a bridge on the track are also the "bridges" of the song being played.
  • Weird Moon: Seen in "Resonant Chamber". There is a moon in each of the four windows, and each of them is at a different phase.
  • Zeerust: Invoked in "Future Retro", which uses futuristic sounds with retro-styled instruments.