Musician Dan Deacon has released a new app for iPhone and Android that aims to make his audiences feel more engaged at concerts. The app gives concert-goers the ability to create their own accompanying light and sound spectacle during the show. The free app syncs all the smartphones in the room to create a light show, (similar to Coldplay’s LED wristbands and Disney’s LED Ears) but doesn’t require the audience to have any equipment or device other than their phone. No Wi-Fi or data connection is needed; instead, phones in the audience interact with audio from the concert and unlock through ‘calibration tones.’ The use of audio instead of Wi-Fi makes it possible for Deacon to communicate and control the phones from any stage. With the app, phone screens can be used for a light show, speakers as instruments, and L.E.D. as strobe lights.
Deacon writes about the new app and its goals for the concert-going experience:
I thought more and more about how we are living in a time where much of the concert going audience has smart phones, that are basically computers, that can be used as both sound making machines and lighting devices. The thought of an audience being the light and the sound source for a show became one of my main goals. The detailed spatial sound environments that could be created: lights all in unison coming from endless and constantly changing direction as the audience moved…yet the lights all change in unison; using the LEDs as strobe lights, etc. A whole world began to emerge… Hopefully the app will turn the experience of having your phone out at a show into something communally immersive.
The app also enables users to produce and record their own sounds with a built-in musical instrument component. You can see the app in action in the video below: