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Amon Tobin


About the Video

No wonder Rio de Janeiro artist Amon Tobin is known as a "scientist of sound." His music is the result of unwearying sound experiments since the 90s, when he released his first album, Adventures in Foam, under the name Cujo. After receiving recognition for playing jazz and hip-hop inspired drum 'n' bass and twelve (yes, twelve) albums later, he’s considered to be one of the most influential electronic music artists in the world.

In order to produce his new album, Tobin transformed sounds and noises from real life--like a creaky chair or puffs of air--to create sounds that are rooted in the mundane but then rendered unrecognizable after being "treated" by the producer. Just to get an idea: for the newly released ISAM, Tobin recorded samples in their original form and then modified and "constructed" them with the help of a Haken Continuum—a series of sensors covered by a single basis of neoprene that responds to finger pressure in three dimensions. But the project goes far beyond the album itself, unfolding into visual interpretations of the ISAM concept, which mixes the genres of psychedelia and science fiction for the album's tour visuals. Tobin teamed up with V Squared Labs for their projection mapping expertise, Heather Shaw from Vita Motus Design to conceive a set for live performance and Alex Lazarus Blasthaus for production design and creative direction. See how they came up with "some weird adolescent fantasy of being in a spaceship," in the video above. In yet another effort to experience Tobin's music visually, he called on Tessa Farmer, a visual artist who choreographs dainty, taxidermic scenographic installations made from insects, animals and bones and asked her to fabricate scenes for each of his songs. By allowing each song to exist in physical space within a gallery setting, he reached a whole other group of people who might not have heard his music. Download a track off ISAM below.



At a glance

Giving sound a visual environment.

Aliases: Amon Adonai Santos de Araújo Tobin; Cujo
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Montreal, Canada
Profession: Producer, DJ
Labels: Ninja Tune; Ninebar
Selected discography: ISAM (2011); Supermodified (2000); Foley Room (2007); Bricolage (1997); Adventures in Foam (1996)
Notables: Live tours “ISAM 2.0” (2012) and “ISAM” (2011); video game soundtracks for Sucker Punch’s Infamous (2009) and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory (2005)

ISAM Production Credits:
Alex Lazarus: Production Designer / Creative Director Heather Shaw: Concept Creative & Set Designer / Vita Motus Design
V Squared Labs: Director: Vello Virkhaus Producer: Anastasia King Jaress Lead Programmer / VJ: Peter Sistrom Animators: Emilio Sa, Carlo Sa, Dave Foss, Bryant Place
Leviathan: “Journeyman,” “Wooden Toy,” “Kitty Cat,” “Piece of Paper” and “Go to 10” Executive Producer: Chad Hutson Executive Creative Director: Jason White Chief Technical Officer: Matt Daly Creative Director: Sam Gierasimczuk for “Piece of Paper” and “Go to 10” Creative Director: Bradon Webb for “Journeyman,” “Wooden Toy” and “Kitty Cat” Producer: Brandy Olsen Programmer: Adam Berg Compositing: Tim Sepulveda, Erik Jensen, Chris Beers, 3D Animation: Jody Evenson, Katrina Nelken, David Brodeur, Blake Cartwright, David Brodeur, Dan Tiffany, Jimi Filipovski, Dave Pasciuto Design Development: Derek Weglarz, Gareth Fewel, Aaron Edwards Assistant Producer: Krissy Estrada Editor on “Go to 10”: Daniel Ryan