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The Smomid Is A Really Strange MIDI-Based Instrument

Posted by on February 13, 2014 at 12:21 pm

As you're probably wondering, the Smomid isn't just a name. It's an acronym that stands for "String Modeling MIDI Device,” but it's stylized grammatically as just a word. So that clears that up. After watching some of the vides you'll find below, I've figured out that I can't properly explain the instrument better than their website does. However, after listening to it I'm a little confused… it just sounds like old-school video game MIDI, but all smashed into an instrument. Maybe I'm missing something here? Granted, maybe that's just the samples inventor Nick Demopoulos had loaded into it at the time and you can load up other ones?

Between this and the djent stick I'm not sure which one I'd have more fun screwing around with for a few hours.

“Smomid software allows a performer to control many aspects of a performance, including playing melodies, harmonies, controlling beats, bass lines, triggering percussion samples, manipulating audio files and more. All aspects of a performance can be controlled from a grid on a fretboard and buttons on an instrument body.

“In addition to emitting sound, the Smomid emits light that is rhythically in sync with the music the instrument is creating. The first Smomid was completed in 2010 and had four strings. The second Smomid was completed in June 2012 and has six strings, two joysticks and 11 high-powered LEDs (among other things).

“In 2013 this project grew to include two additional controllers called pyramids that incorporated a dynamic and interactive visual element in live performance. The lights on these additional devices interact with musical rhythms and timbral aspects of music created with the Smomid. They also provide additional control surfaces that have allowed Nick to incorporate “Machine Learning” and other algorithmic type processes in real time."

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