Behold the “Circle Guitar”, an invention of Anthony Dickens, which has a motor-driven disk that spins and strums the strings. You possibly can place pick-pegs within the disk to characterize totally different strumming patterns, so it is form of like a MIDI sequencer for strumming — the guitar self-strums the patterns with machined precision, at as much as 250 picks-per-second.
The upshot is you can play stuff that seems like sequenced synthesizer — besides with the actual percussive tones that you simply get from an actually-plucked string.
The Circle Guitar generates a time code which different devices can observe, or it may be synchronized with the clock of a digital audio workstation over USB, increasing artistic choices by, for instance, phasing the disc rotation in entrance of or behind the beat, or participating a swing movement the place the spin slows for a time earlier than rushing up once more.
The participant’s fretting hand is used just about like on an ordinary guitar, forming chord shapes or altering pitch on the frets on the rosewood fingerboard. Particular person strings cannot be singled out for consideration in the course of the spin, the entire strings are struck by the guitar picks hooked up to the spinning disc, however the participant can mute strings on the physique or neck if desired.
“The smallest motion out of your fingers can create huge tonal modifications, particularly when rhythmically shifting fingers forwards and backwards over a couple of strings to permit them to intermittently play earlier than muting them once more,” Dickens advised us. “Shifting your fingers across the strings produces loopy harmonics – shifting from tonal to atonal sounds.”
Here is Ed O’Brien from Radiohead taking part in it, and discussing its artistic potential ….