Out of bounds: dvdv explores the passage of time, thoughts + emotion in the neural networks of audio-interactive album ai am

, 24 March 2018

dvdv (aka Phyllis Josefine) premieres audio-interactive website ai am via AQNB today, developed as part of the album of the same name, self-released on January 28.

Confronting human morality in the face of artificial intelligence, ai am is a selection of fourteen tracks; subtle breaths of droning ambient touched by barely perceptible but deeply gloomy lyrics that echo in an abyss of electronic noise. The album comes from a crisis point in Josefine’s life — one no doubt shared by many socially-aware online artists at the time — of an impending global war with historical precedent. “I was imagining bombs falling right down in front of me,” she writes via email, “empty supermarkets, roofs being broken down.” 

ai am includes sounds generated from artificial neural networks (ANNs), deep systems for learning where new sounds are created from the data that feeds them. Josefine uses code written by a friend, as well as the NSynth neural synthesizer, to develop the urgent and frenetic beats accompanying an epic vocal reminiscent of that of Björk or Jenny Hval. The discordant tension between the organic voice and synthetic electronica echoes the core dread of human-technology relations in ai am, a project years in the making and fraught with fear and tragedy.**

dvdv’s ai am album was self-released on January 28. She is performing Kuwait’s The Hub on March 23, 2018.