Beck’s newest album is nothing like what you’re used to and yet exactly as advertised. There’s no CD in the box and you won’t find it on iTunes because the twenty songs that make up this collection are sheet music only. If you want to hear Song Reader you’ll have to play it yourself (or befriend some musicians.)
We quite like this experiment. It harkens to a time when all music was communicated visually and reading and playing (unless you’re Mozart) was a required skill. Although rarely mentioned outside musical circles, there’s a visual aesthetic to music. In the same way typography adds a feeling to the text, musical notation communicates something about the music.
Another fascinating aspect to this experiment is that this will be an album entirely of covers. Beck has made no indication that he’ll be recording a version of Song Reader so every song you hear from it will be an interpretation of an artist playing. Beck has provided everything and nothing – simultaneously all the notes and a blank canvas.
Song Reader is being published by the famed McSweeney’s and is available for pre-order now. You can download one of the songs (in sheet music form of course) from songreader.net, check out some of the renditions already recorded, and post your own (maybe recorded in Sound Shapes?.. jk)
On account of turkeys and families we’re taking this week off from the livestream and Theme-A-Week announcement… but there’s still plenty to do!
If playing levels is your vibe we’ve got Theme-A-Weeks for weeks. If you’re feeling more creative, why not revisit a previous Theme-A-Week? The announcement is weekly but the theme never ends and we play all your levels.
Ok well, so have a great weekend, enjoy your friends and fam, and we’ll catch you soon.
Hey Sound Shapers, we’re really excited to announce our first wave of DLC: four new packs are coming your way – three Sound Packs and a Curved Terrain Pack. The Sound Packs each include five new instruments, five brand new Beat School levels, and for you Trophy hunters, five new Trophies per pack (a total of 15!)
The Sound Packs are $0.99 each, and the Curved Terrain Pack is free. You’ll find everything in our new in-game Sound Shapes Music Shop today. (You can also grab them from the PS Store as usual.)
Here’s a short trailer with a track we put together using some of the new sounds. And remember, if you create something you’re digging, tell us on Twitter, Facebook – we love playing your levels.
Oh, and one (ok, a few) more things… So the community has created over 15,000 levels (!) and we’ve been noting our favorites since launch. But how to share them? We have an idea! Coming in December is the Community Milkcrate – the best user-created content in Sound Shapes gathered and organized into themed albums so you can find the levels that match your mood or play style. Chill, amped, long, short, tough as nails, and on and on. As part of the Milkcrate, we’ve been chatting with some rad musicians and game industry folks and they’ll also be putting together collections of their favorites for you (their stuff coming in 2013.) The new year will also bring a new vehicle DLC pack but before the big ‘13 we have a little holiday present from everyone here at Queasy, stay tuned!
The DLC Details
Acoustic Sound Pack ($0.99) Bring some clean analog tones to your game with five new acoustic instruments. Strum a tune with a guitar, dance across the ivories on a piano, or thumb the unique sounds of the kalimba.
Drum Kits Sound Pack ($0.99) This pack is all about rhythm. Snares, hi-hats, toms, and more let you groove to everything from a cool jazz backdrop to a driving rock beat. There’s even an electronic kit for some 80’s hip-hop style jams if that’s more your style.
8-Bit Sound Pack ($0.99) Compose in the key of chiptune with bleeps, bloops, and other classic game sounds. It’s more than just chiptunes as you’ll get modern electronic synths, bass lines, and loops too. A variety packed pack for sure!
Curved Terrain Pack (free download) This one’s for the platforming fans out there. Bend, stretch, and shape curves to add smooth surfaces to your smooth beats. Many of you have been waiting for this and it’s free right now. (It’s also key for some future DLC but we’ll keep that a surprise for now.)
Sound Shapes user ‘SeReVo’ mixed a killer 8 minute track in Sound Shapes. It builds, climbs, falls, chills, and sounds so good we found ourselves just letting in play in the background as we worked.
The whole mix was done entirely in the Sound Shapes editor and really shows what it can do. We especially like @ 3m15s where he’s grouping and moving notes on the fly to completely change the mix and also the section @ 4m38s summoning the ghosts of Daft Punk’s Homework album.
If you’re feeling like a slower jam, check this one out.