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Machinedrum’s latest: “Ocean of Thought” VR and Human Energy Tour

Ninja Tune and Machinedrum have announced the release of a VR experience for “Ocean of Thought” – a polychromatic aural meditation lifted off last year’s Human Energy LP. Made in collaboration with Finnish designer and innovator Antti Jäderholm, the artists at work hail it “as much a piece of visual art as it is a showcase of new technology.”

The experience functions as a real-time graphics application rather than a video file, and blazes a new trail in the visual adventure of music: neither a static YouTube player nor an application to be downloaded strictly for VR headsets, the WebVR technology works in web browsers on the computer as well as mobile devices and yes, headsets too.

According to Vizor founder and CPO Jäderholm, “Ocean of Thought is a magic carpet ride through the unconscious mind. It’s designed for VR with positional tracking (Oculus Rift or HTC Vive), but as it is running in the browser, everyone can watch it on their normal computer or phone screen. It’s a real-time graphics application, so you won’t be seeing this in YouTube as a 360 video…”

Upon dropping into the experience, viewers are immediately transported to an otherworldly landscape, where pastel hues function as climate, textures are both alien and warmly familiar, and an omnipresent voice guides the listener nearer to their centre – wherever it may lie. Human Energy – Machinedrum’s 2016 album from which “Ocean of Thought” is drawn – was praised for its exploration of the unknowable and colourful divine, and in this way the VR experience couldn’t be more apt.

Enjoy the “Ocean of Thought” VR experience here:

This release comes hot on the heels of Machinedrum’s announcement of a European tour starting later this month, visiting London on 23rd March. Critically acclaimed experimentalists Strangeloop and Timeboy will join up for the presentation of Human Energy Live A/V, furthering his reputation as a pioneer of the multi-sensory.

Buy your tickets for the London gig here but hurry up, there’s only two weeks to go! Meanwhile, you can listen to the Human Energy LP here.


Photo: Machinedrum 2016 by Tonje Thilesen