The future of music

Sony and David Gilmour release an innovative generative AI collaboration

November 21, 2023
AI orb

Key takeaways

  • Sony Music collaborated with AI company Vermillio to create a generative AI project named Metallic Spheres in Colour.
  • It’s based on The Orb & David Gilmour’s album by the same name.
  • Visitors can generate album artwork and remixes of movements from the album.

Sony Music has released a digital AI ‘installation’ based on Metallic Spheres in Colour from The Orb & David Gilmour, with original artwork by Simon Ghahary.

The project’s website, metallicspheres.io, allows fans to interactively remix music and cover art from the album using AI tools.

Sony Music describes this project as a “visionary re-interpretation” of the David Gilmour and The Orb 2010 album Metallic Spheres, which was reimagined as Metallic Spheres in Colour and rereleased on September 29th, 2023.

Dennis Kooker, President of Global Digital Business Sales at Sony Music Entertainment, was keen to note that the artists advocated for the project, stating, “The artists proactively reached out to us to work together to come up with an experience that is really unique, and really driven to generate excitement with the fan base.” 

Here’s how you can use the AI remix tool:

Creating AI album art

  1. Visit the website: Start by visiting metallicspheres.io and listen to music from the album “Metallic Spheres in Colour.”
  2. Add reactions: While listening, type your reactions to the music in the box. 
  3. Generate album art: The AI uses these inputs to create a unique image from your reactions, which you type as a prompt. 
  4. Community album cover: When the song ends, entries merge into a single community album cover.
Sony and David Gilmour release an innovative generative AI collaboration 1
AI-generated album art through metallicspheres.io

Remixing a track

  1. Select an album cover: To start remixing a track, users select a fan-generated album cover from the gallery.
  2. Guide the AI: The emotions associated with the chosen album cover guide the AI in remixing the track​​. Based on these inputs, the AI generates a unique remix of the track.
  3. Listen! Users can then listen to their AI-remixed version of the track.

The project is powered by a machine learning model developed in partnership with Vermillio, a company described as “the first generative AI platform that empowers creators and protects their work using Authenticated AI.” 

Vermillio’s broader aim is to integrate AI with blockchain technology to enable creators to trace their digital creations, ensuring proper attribution and ownership. 

We are experimenting here for something that hopefully, is a great experience, and [that] we would love to do more of in the future

Dennis Kooker – President of Global Digital Business Sales at Sony Music Entertainment

The artists we’ve seen embracing AI thus far, such as the Beatles for ‘Now and Then’ and now the Pink Floyd legend David Gilmour, are perhaps not the likeliest candidates. 

As for Vermillio, there’s little specific information on precisely what it’ll offer, but platforms like this could help guarantee some level of traceability as people’s music through AI models. One to watch out for.

Sam Jeans

Writer and digital artist who has been covering the latest AI-related news, including generative AI and its influence on the creative industries. Sam plays drums and has been writing for tech and music sites since 2016.

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