With the never-ending glut of mobile apps in the marketplace, it's always refreshing to come across a unique implementation in the mobile app space - such as the latest digital release from Montreal's MUTEK festival.
MUTEK has been taking over Montreal every year in late May since 2000, and in recent years has become a broad collective of artists, musicians and visual explorers focused on delivering a multifaceted creative experience - including immersive digital experiments.
The festival’s range strives to be diverse, with interests in both the experimental and the playful sides of digital creativity. MUTEK’s programming intends to create a sonic space that can support innovation in new electronic music and digital art. This is a world of constant evolution and incessant refinement – the “MU” in MUTEK refers consciously to the notion of “mutation”.
This focus on digital creativity has been enhanced this year by a ground-breaking mobile app: called Audiosphere, it is the first in an expected series of apps to tie music curation to physical exploration of space.
MUTEK artists from across the spectrum have personally curated music from the MUTEK festival and placed it along the various routes of the Montreal's public transit network, STM.
Get on the bus, fire up the app, and geo-location takes care of the rest. The app uses GPS to determine exactly what bus route the user is on, and delivers geo-targeted, specifically-curated music to match the trip.
Audiosphere invites you to groove to the sound of MUTEK Festival...Discover a musical landscape based on your current location in the city.
Local musicians composed original work inspired by the many neighborhoods along the 55 and 80 bus lines. Exclusive mixes have been produced for the lines 18, 24 and 165.
The selection is currently limited to certain bus lines; nonetheless, imagining an app that does this regularly for commuters - with new music curated weekly by local artists - is not a far stretch.
It's an ingenious way to tie an experience to a place, and by creating a deep emotional connection with the user, MUTEK will likely create a more profound bond with guests. This bond is valuable, and may lead to more brand advocates and loyal festival attendees - or, at the very least, drop an aural layer on a typically mundane experience for Montreal's citizens and visitors.
And for those who have never heard of MUTEK, the app is an opportunity to showcase the musical magic of musicians that participate in MUTEK each year.