We love it when tech and music intersect. Sometimes we find amazing gadgets to improve traditional instruments, and other times we get excited about entirely new instruments using the latest tech. We’re also big fans of tech that allows everyone to create music even if they aren’t able to learn a traditional instrument.
We recently tried a gadget that can tick all these boxes. Mogees (which sounds plural but is singular) is a vibration sensor that can turn any object into a musical instrument using smart software on your iPhone or computer. When you attach the Mogees vibration sensor to an object and connect it to the iOS app, you can synthesis sounds from the vibrations. The object could be a tree, a fridge, or even an actual musical instrument. We had it turn the vibration from patting an acoustic guitar into a sweeping sci-fi sound.
Mogees recognises different gestures, even for the same object. You can make different sounds by tapping objects in different places, by scratching them instead, or hitting them with other objects rather than your hands. If the vibration is different, the resulting sound can be different. Each gesture can create a MIDI note to play a tune or correspond to different sound engines. You can see how it all works here:
The app uses sophisticated sound engines that sound great and give you fine control over the synthesis of each sound. Our favourite engines were the MUON re-synthesiser and the Interpol808 drum machine. Once you’ve got the sounds you like for each vibration, you can bang and scratch out a tune and record it on apps like Garageband to be mixed in with your other beeps and boops.
Is it a genuinely good piece of equipment for making music? Yes. You can be creative and make some great tunes and beats for your music using Mogees. More important than that, it’s really fun. We’ve shown it to a number of people and even non-musicians enjoyed finding their rhythm. Finding new and weird objects to try Mogees on is part of the appeal. We’ve used a lava lamp, a whoopee cushion, and a police car.
Main image © Mogees