PLLUG plays with light and dark to tease out your curiosity

Everything is enveloped with darkness. You are a creature that thrives on electricity. You fall into a strange underground world; separated from your loved ones, you must find a way to get back to the surface. This is the premise of the game PLLUG, created by carpetbones. With simple keyboard controls, you wander around a maze-like landscape, encountering other strange creatures, and must absorb energy to keep your surroundings lit up in order to make your way home. each nook and cranny takes on an element of interest Development of PLLUG started in 2013 and although much of the art was…


Need more Panoramical? Check out this ethereal interactive journey

With new album Yume, ambient electronica musician Helios seems to recall the beauty of lazing underneath a sun-crested sky. The music soothes by letting high notes drift out to a gold horizon. It seems to lift off from the soft fringes of grass and get carried out on a hot puff of wind. More precisely, it’s a series of airy vignettes punctuated by a dozy amalgam of lightly brushed acoustic guitar, everyday sounds echoed out as percussion, and piano melodies that seem to have been recorded underwater. A tranquil reverie is conjured, and so it comes as no surprise that…


This David Lynch supercut is standing behind you right now, smiling

I get why someone might not love Eraserhead: it is largely without dialogue or plot and it costars an embalmed cow fetus. I can even concede that Eraserhead may not be David Lynch’s “best” movie, as his thematic and formal skillset came into greater focus in the following decade, and he somehow looped back and got more experimental around the turn of the millennium. But Eraserhead is one of those out-of-the-gates works—like, I dunno, Dubliners, or Illmatic—that perfectly crystallizes everything an artist would go on to do. In Lynch’s case it was this: the direct fusion of ambient sound design with horror filmmaking. …


An unholy matrimony of noise music and sparse videogame worlds

Patrick McDermott says that ambient and noise is the most interactive music he has ever felt, both as a listener and composer. What he especially enjoys about this type of arcane composition is that it lets you dream up whatever visuals you want as you listen. “The sonic world it creates, the mood it induces, the space it allows with often the long length of tracks, the a-typical structure, the lack of lyrics and traditional elements”—all of this, he says, makes for a unique interactive experience between the music and your mind. grainy, unsettling soundscapes.  McDermott practices what he preaches.…


Master the musical puzzles of Circuits by listening closely

It turns out that angsty teenage expression resulting from mind-numbing boredom does have a use beyond pissing off your parents (it’s what got me into writing about games, after all). The months and—I dread—years that I spent pushing pre-made loops of electronic noise into formation, alongside the distorted screams I recorded with a $10 microphone in GarageBand, are the reason I haven’t made a single mistake in Circuits yet. the taps and slides of the interface turns you into a cosmic DJ.  You don’t need a background in creating something-that-resembles-music to excel in Circuits; a patient ear should be enough.…