This next in the series of thoughts on the rise of new AI uses from DESIRE GROUPE founder Paul G Roberts looks at some of the most amazing new creation tools, all powered by AI.

Credit: Nigel John Stanford Youtube

This time he looks at live music.

But first a quote from Gandhi, the liberator of India.

Learn as if you will live forever, live like you will die tomorrow.” — Mahatma Gandhi

Nigel John Stanford’s “Automatica” video has left most musicians and social media users alike with their mouths agape. This band is not humans pretending to be robots like Daft Punk, here the robot musicians are mechanical arms.

Stanford gave music lessons to robots in his New Zealand garage for almost a month — teaching them to play piano keys, guitars, drums, and even operate percussion foot pedals.

The track begins with two industrial robots playing a bass guitar. Soon, other robots join in, each playing its own instrument to hit precise notes. There is a drum, a turntable, an organ and even a synthesiser that the robots play.

Shocked? Well, its true. Stanford explored the connection between music and technology to make new tunes, and the results will leave you befuddled.

Sharing a 4.15-minute video on YouTube titled “Automatica”link above,  he left most social media users amazed with the talent of his robotic partners. The musician taught the AI arms to play piano keys, guitars, drums, and even operate percussion foot pedals.

The video goes on to show robots taking control of the music after which they destroy all the instruments in spectacular The Who’ fashion. There is even a precise, laser cutting robot that slices through the instruments while Stanford stands amidst all the chaos, leading the track out in his own guitar.

While the video itself is designed to be cinematic, it shows how robots will potentially be used as musicians in the future. It begs the question though, now that AI can create any sounds possible without the playing of instruments anyway, perhaps they will just be for concert performances. Who knows what they could end up looking like.

Last month, an AI program called Amper had composed and produced an entire musical album on its own. Earlier this month, a robot was reported to have led a live orchestra in opera.

The robots for Stanford’s project came from Kuka, which is an industrial robotics firm. He apparently taught the robots to play the music by programming them on his own as he composed the track, working by himself for over a month.

“I do all of the programming,” Stanford said, “I think it’s important to come at the scientific aspects from the perspective of a musician.”

The track is a single from the album Robots vs. Music by Nigel Stanford.

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