australian music producer

Poseidon’s Music Box (Sound Sculpture concept)


The Project

Continuing from my 2017 sound sculpture Migaloo’s Song (Cooper, G. 2017) I intend to design and build a large-scale sound sculpture music box, with a pre-sequenced progression of chimes that will be entered into the 2018 Swell Sculpture Festival on the Gold Coast. The sculpture will be based on coral formations, creating a large moving kinetic man-made coral piece out of steel, mirrors and succulent plant life called ‘Poseidon’s Music Box’.

I will take design cues from both coral and succulent formations and integrate the music box parts into the design. The whole sculpture will be silver, black and contain some surfaces covered in mirrors and succulent plants, helping to blend the man-made and natural elements in the sculpture. The whole structure will be powered by solar renewable energy to turn the music-box and light the structure at night time.

The piece of music generated from the sculpture will be relaxing in contrast to the social noise and chatter of the approximately 15,000 patrons visiting the Swell Sculpture Festival every day in September.

As I progress with my sculpture work, I am setting myself up with a profile of kinetic sound sculptures and geometric design work based on mathematical and patterns found in nature. My previous work ‘Migaloo’s Song’ was based on the Fibonacci Sequence with a series of circles and the song was composed to mimic and coincide to the humpback whale songs. This coral formation sculpture is based on regular quadrilaterals (squares), the rhombus, dihedral groups and will following the design cues from both coral formations, microbial life and succulent plant life.

(my sculpture concept video

My interest in the construction of musical instruments has always been based on the physics of sound and acoustics and my interest in sculpting and ‘Sound Sculpture’ has been developed through my collection of music boxes and Leonardo DaVinci inspired machines over the years. I see the concept of moving towards sculpture and sound sculpture more of an addition from my music career, rather than a new field. I am not overly interested in simply creating sculptures, but more so incorporating music composition, music technology and acoustics into sculpture.

Rather than simply creating sonic environments, my interests are in musical elements and scores to be integrated into the sculptures using my background in acoustics, physics and as a musician, composer and producer.

The connection with natural elements and environmental activism is also important to me, mimicking and taking cues from nature in design and recreating these repeating patterns in my design, while attempting to enact some change and awareness in the audience in relation to the environment.

Overall the sculpture has a few aspects, but the integration of sound sculpture work in the form of a playing musical score, powered by renewable energy approaches the topic from the basis of an environmental statement against coal mining and directly how it is affecting our great barrier reef. Bringing the coral bleaching issue to the audience and making a bold connection between the coal mining in Australia.

The sculpture will be powered by recycled renewable solar energy, showing some solutions available to solve our energy crisis and avoid the reef system being killed by the use of fossil fuels and in turn climate change. In direct response to our government’s statements that renewable energy is noisy and ugly, I will also be showing that a renewable energy device can be aesthetically beautiful, fitting into the landscape down by the beach at Currumbin on the Gold Coast and sound musically pleasing while generating energy. I will also be able to use the power generated to run some LED screens that explain the issues we are facing with mining in this country and what people can do to help push our government towards renewable energy.

What I have recently found through research and exploration of the field of ‘Sound Sculpture’ is the importance of environment and audience in relation to the pieces. This aspect reappears constantly in the discussion of ‘Sound Sculpture’.

Ros Bandt discusses the location and environment of sound sculptures in relation to the audience as one of the important defining factors in his 1991 journal on ‘Public Interactive Sound Sculpture’ (Bandt. Ros, 1991). The concept that the recorded and performance-based music world is often stationary and inanimate, situated in concert halls or in front of a stereo system. He suggests that Sound Sculpture can allow participation from the listener and respects the listener as a creative participant.

The practice of sculpture for myself is based on engineering, mechanics and musical acoustics, although the aesthetic design space is integral to my creations. I have always taken cues from nature and my surroundings and I am fascinated by the geometric designs in nature from the microscopic through to the planetary evolution and forces that shape them. My interest in the biology of life and its combination with physics has been reinforced through my Astrobiology work and I have a drive to recreate this in my sculptures. The fabrication and construction work with my hands also provides a meditative practice for me and allows me to rest mentally.

Creative Merit

Public Art

For art curator Shannon Galpin, the importance of public art, is that it can bring art outside the galleries and place it in our everyday lives (Galpin, S. 2014). Inspiring and invoking change, illuminating activism and the spirt of hope in the public as they engage with it visually set amongst our everyday environment. Public art can surround us and create conversations and controversy, it forces us to have an opinion as we try to understand it’s purpose, starting a two-way conversation. Public art can reach people that may not have previously engaged with art and change their perceptions on certain topics, amplifying the voice of the artist.

The sculpture while fitting into the ‘Sound Sculpture’ field will be a machine that creates wonderment and curiosity in the audience. This in turn helps bring the viewer into understanding the concept behind the art and to draw their own conclusions from the visual and auditory stimulation. The concepts of climate change in relation to mining and the environment are common knowledge and it is my hope that the audience will connect this from their viewing of the piece.


The sculpture and the research attached to the design and implementation will help to contribute to a broader body of knowledge for future sound sculptors and art activists. Through my research and ideation of this project, I will be documenting and providing insight into my processes and perspectives on both the art design aspects and how I intend to integrate the environmental activism outcomes through my art.

The artist Sanaz Mazinani in his ‘Art + Activism’ video (Mazinani, S. 2015) talks about the significance of the artist’s identity and how it becomes as important as the work itself, the understanding of the perspective in which we come from, defines the context of the work and possibly through understanding and education we can better derive a foundation for our own art. Through my work with this piece I hope to provide a case study for others to better work through their own perspectives and how to integrate their intensions into their own art. I would like to ask what is the world like today when you created your art? and how can there be a potential for change through your art?


The medium of sculpture itself, the physical art space, creates a relationship between the artist’s perspective and intension and the viewer. This physical creation forms spaces for conversation and exchange, a new narrative can be formed that engages the viewer to think about the topic of climate change and how their actions are affecting the living organisms that form the coral reefs.

I will be attempting to use sound sculpture and my creative practice to create a new narrative on the topic of climate change, A new set of questions to ask the audience through my art.

Thelma Golden expresses that art can be used to create a new narrative in her presentation ‘How art gives shape to cultural change’ VIDEO 1:55

“I was interested in why and how I could create a new story, a new narrative in art history and in the world, and to do this I knew that I had to see the way that artists work, understand the artist studio as a laboratory, imagine then reinventing the museum as a think tank and looking at the exhibition as the ultimate white paper, asking questions, providing the space to look and think about answers.” (Golden, T. 2013)

 I intend to engage my role as an artist to be a catalyst for this discussion, my intension is for my role to not simply be a content provider, but as a catalyst for change in thought processes and then in direct action.

Marcus Ellsworth also believes that art has a powerful role to play in creating change and connecting people with a new truth on an existing topic. In his 2014 TEDx talk ‘Art as activism’ (Ellsworth, M. 2014) he explains that art is a bringer of change, it has a way of connecting people, inspiring, motivating and moving people’s opinions. That we can use our art to express our truth and enact some change. I see my sculpture work as a chance to get out and tell my truth, unapologetically and without censoring myself to make the world a better place.

Dr Tammy Brown suggests the role of art in pushing for freedom, using art to educate and uplift in her video presentation ‘Art is a weapon for social change’.

“Art has the power to counteract and transcend racism, sexism, classism or any other ism that comes to mind.” (Brown, T. 2014)

Socially and politically engaged art strives to provide a counterpoint to the prevailing images of power and the stereotypes that are fed to us by the media on topics such as democracy, civil and human rights, capitalism and the environment. I suggest that all art is in sense political, as it is about a person’s views and freedom to act, freedom to express ourselves, art is about taking a position and encouraging others to feel that same emotion.

So how can I make a difference to the environment and climate change with the music in my sculpture? While there have been many commercial attempts to raise awareness and funds for the environment and climate change from famous musical artists using their presence to encourage others to take up arms, I intend to focus on my own local neighborhood. Expecting a reach globally is over-ambitious, so I intend to put my efforts towards enacting change in the audiences that will experience the sculpture first hand at the Swell Sculpture Festival in September 2018 on the Gold Coast, with an expected audience of 200,000 people.

There is a large collective of artists on the Gold Coast and Northern NSW and I intend to use my sculpture work to create a collective network of artists that can help drive a more direct change in our local governments thinking in relation to power consumption and renewable energy.

Relevant Context

Art’s Purpose

As an artist it is Important for me to have a voice, to be able to express myself, most artists I have met are driven to do this, to share their emotions with the world. Oscar Wilde was quoted in saying that “All art is quite useless”, while he was most likely being glib, I believe it is simply finding purpose or understanding in art that defines it’s use. Art allows for something that cannot be defined easily, it is difficult to quantify or qualify how anyone person will see your art or predict the ways in which it will affect people. In contradiction to Oscar Wilde, Friedrich Nietzsche said that “We have art in order not to perish from the truth”, I think that art has the ability to take from the past and present and help define what is now and how the future can be.

In Wilson’s 2016 article on ‘The Purpose of Art’, he quotes British artist Anthony Gormley in relation to art.

“Art is about one person’s expectation of and their use of their own freedom to act.” (Wilson, M. 2016)

Wilson also quotes composer Paul O’Neil in relation to great art and emotional response.

“The purpose of art is to create an emotional response in the person that is exposed to that art. And there are three categories of art; bad art, good art and great art. Bad art will elicit no emotional response in the person that is exposed to it, i.e.; a song you hear in an elevator and it does nothing to you, a picture on a wall that gives you the same emotional response as if the wall had been blank, a movie that chews up time. Good art will make you feel an emotion that you have felt before; you see a picture of a forest and you remember the last time you went fishing with your dad, you hear a song about love and you remember the last time you were in love. Great art will make you feel an emotion you have never felt before; seeing the pieta, the world-famous sculpture by Michelangelo, can cause someone to feel the pain of losing a child even if they’ve never had one.” (Wilson, M. 2016)

Perhaps then the best art should ask you what you think, prompt you to ask questions and put you into doubt. Katerina Gregos (Gregos, K. 2014) suggests that

“Art cracks open cemented opinions and challenges the given. It moves beyond the expected and the known and functions as the conscious of society” it gives voice to the other. “Art highlights important ideas, problems and issues that are sidelined or silenced due to political or economic interests. Art functions as the barometer of society, as a moral or intellectual resistance.”

In her TEDx talk she presents the following ideas,

“Art thinks about the world in its current state and reimagines it as it should be. More importantly, Art is the last frontier of unregulated free expression which is particularly important at a time when the commons public space and information are increasingly being privatized and regulated by the “Neo-liberal” order. In that sense, art is born of and advocates freedom. Artists always see a world full of opportunities, chances, potentials, possibilities and prospects, their ability to go beyond the possible and into the imaginable, should be an example and inspiration for us all.” (Gregos, K. 2014)

Sound Sculpture

In direct relation to my art as ‘Sound Sculpture’, Georgina Born discusses the extension of sound installation art in her book ‘Music, sound and space transformations of public and private experience’.

“The emergence of sound installation art in the second half of the twentieth century reflects fundamental shifts within multiple arenas: conceptions of space and space–time; the ascendancy of site within the aural imagination; the extension of music and sonic arts into expanded sculptural and architectural models; and the role of the public in relation to aesthetic experience.” (Born, G. 2013)

And Niels Van Tomme discusses the added importance of sound art in his article ‘Radical Sound Activism’.

“What is it about sound that is actually able to register a type of critique that may be different from vision, for example? There is a certain kind of intimacy with sound; it moves through time; it does in fact register the evolution and the layering of ideas.” (Van Tomme, N. 2009)

He also goes on to say that,

“It is valuable that people become aware of the emotional relations they have to themselves, to each other and to the conditions they are experiencing. That affective level becomes a form of analysis; it is by registering those things that you are also able to have an additional level of critical reflection.” (Van Tomme, N. 2009)

I would suggest that my work with sound sculpture can also blur the line between activism and art by interrogating the environment and politics that relate to my community. Creating interest through the use of sound and music within my sculpture will bring more interest and create a deeper need for understanding the piece. Making art is bringing something to the world, and sound sculpture is combining music and physical form in the guise of wonderment. 

My own searches for works relating or being called ‘Sound Sculptures’ have found works that can either generate sound and sonic textures including ‘noise’ or un-harmonious sound) such as the ‘Aeolus’ (K. 2011), works that are machines and ‘perform’ structured or pitched musical pieces, such as the Music Box at the Figment interactive sculpture garden in New York (The Music Box. 2018) and also works that simply visually represent sound, such as Penda’s soundwaves in China (Zhi, X. 2015).

Anyone of these three definitions can represent ‘Sound Sculptures’ and it seems that simply including or representing sound in a physical sculpture can define a ‘Sound Sculpture’. My interest is from a musician/composer/producer background and therefore strongly situated in the 2nd definition and creating moving kinetic sculptures that perform a pre-composed piece. I am also interested in having these kinetic sculptures powered by either natural forces or renewable energy.

Licht mentions that David Troop called sound sculpture ‘sound combined with visual art practices’ and that Schulz mentions it is ‘an art form y in which sound has become material within the context of an expanded concept of sculpture y for the most part works that are space-shaping and space-claiming in nature’ (Licht, A, 2009). And that

“Sound art holds the distinction of being an art movement that is not tied to a specific time period, geographic location or group of artists, and was not named until decades after its earliest works were produced. Indeed, the definition of term remains elusive”. (Licht, A, 2009)

Through my work on this project I hope to form a better definition of ‘Sound Sculpture’ in relation to my work and put it into perspective with my professional music career. At this stage my definition of Sound Sculpture is anything physical that generates auditory tones, I disagree that sculptures simply visually representing sound waves are ‘Sound Sculptures’.

Inspirations & References

Kinetic Artists

I am inspired by the new and I tend to be drawn to other sculptors that work the same way instead of simply recreating forms, designs and mediums that have been created before. One of my inspirations for kinetic sculpture work is Anthony Howe. I enjoy the connection between geometric design and nature and attempting to mimic that in my sculpture work. Kinetic and geometric work by artists such as Anthony Howe (Howe, A. 2015). There are many kinetic works online and these form a basis for reference. I hope to create a style and profile for myself as a sculptor with the integration of musical pieces, simple color systems, renewable energy and a connection to the environment and nature.

Sound Sculptors

I like the interactivity and integration of natural elements in Steve Mann’s Hydraulophone. It serves three main roles “as an architectural display fountain, like other large fountains that visually define a landmark, iconic representation, or the like; it provides an aquatic play experience, and it invites people of all ages to “play in the water”; it is a visual art sculpture, a sound sculpture, and a musical instrument, thus bringing art, music, culture, and play into the mix.” (Mann, S. 2006)

Harry Bertoia’s sound-producing visual works are very interesting, although he was not aware of the genre ‘Sound Sculpture’ at the time of his creations. He is quoted in saying the following.

“Man is not important. Humanity is what counts, to which, I feel, I have given my contribution. Humanity shall continue without me, but I am not going away. I am not leaving you. Every time you see some tree tops moving in the wind, you will think of me. Or you will see some beautiful flowers; you will think of me. I have never been a very religious man, not in the formal way, but each time I took a walk in the woods, I felt the presence of a superior force around me.” (Bertoia, H. 1978)

As mentions earlier I like the Cutuchogue sisters Kelly and Ashley Goeller’s Music Box and its interactivity.

“Everyone these days listens to music digitally. It’s very individual,” Ashley said. “We wanted to make it collaborative, so in order to play the song two people have to turn the handles.” (The Music Box. 2018)

Other kinetic pipe organ sculptures I have sourced for inspiration include the ‘Wave Organ’ (Wave Organ, 2016) by Peter Richards and George Gonzalez in San Francisco, which uses the wave and tidal movements to amplify the sound of water and the ocean. The Singing Tree (The Singing, Ringing Tree, 2007) by Tonkin Liu Architects in Burley, UK, a collection of steel pipes that utilise the wind to create sound. The ‘Aeolus’ at the Eden Project’ (Aeolus at the Eden Project, 2011) by Luke Jerram in the UK and the ‘Zadar Sea Organ’ (Zadar Sea Organ, 2015) by Nikola Basic in the town of Zadar in Croatia.

Sound Activist Artists

In relation to sound activist artists, Chisholm talks about composer John Luther Adams’ work with Sila and the effect of sound and music on environmental activism.

“Music is no alternative to environmental activism or climate science or direct exposure to melting ice caps, rising seas, and cataclysmic winds, but it can compose climate-change sensations that directly affect our listening, feeling, and thinking. It can even, I venture, redirect our attention outside ourselves, which is to say outside our ubiquitous, Muzak-saturated commercial environments and our global/local webs of news and social media that tend to be self-enclosing and all-absorbing.” (Chisholm, D. 2016)

While I find this work interesting, my professional work in the arts has cemented the idea of creating musical works that have appeal and interest to non-musical people as well as musicians. Simply creating a cacophony of sound and movement is no doubt art, but the lack of a cohesive format leaves most nonmusical or audio based people uninterested and disconnected.

I will be participating in Concert for the Planet on March 24th with my Migaloo Song sculpture and as part of the HOTA choir. The event will feature a globalized performance by the Gold Coast Philharmonic Orchestra, extended to include over 100 local musicians who will perform Holst’s The Planets under the baton of conductor Lachlan Snow. ( I intend to use this opportunity to attach some video screens to my previous sculpture in order to drive some direct action and change in the audience.


To end I would like to share more from Katerina Gregos’ view on the potential of art from her TEDx talk on ‘Why art is important’. She says in relation to art that

“It’s a subtle power that changes the world one perception at a time.”.

“Art is optimistic because it makes a statement that one person can change the world” and that

“Art as an act of shared communication is in a small way saying: I make the world, I don’t simply inherit it”.



Bandt, R. (1991). Public interactive sound sculpture. Australian Journal of Music Education, (1), 5.

Bertoia, H. (2016). Bertoia Home. Retrieved March 12, 2018, from

Gregos, K. (2014, September 02). Why art is important – Katerina Gregos (TEDx). Retrieved March 5, 2018, from

Born, G. (2013). Music, sound and space transformations of public and private experience. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Brown, T., Dr. (2014, May 23). Art is a weapon for social change – Dr Tammy Brown (TEDx). Retrieved March 8, 2018, from

Chisholm, D. (2016). Shaping an Ear for Climate Change. Environmental Humanities,8(2), 172-195. doi:10.1215/22011919-3664211

Cooper, G. (2017, September 27). Migaloo’s Song. Retrieved March 11, 2018, from

Ellsworth, M. (2014, November 15). Art as activism – Marcus Ellsworth (TEDx). Retrieved March 6, 2018, from

Fontana, B. (2008). The relocation of ambient sound: urban sound sculpture. Leonardo41(2), 154-158.

Galpin, S. (2014, February 18). Art as activism – Shannon Galpin (TEDx). Retrieved March 8, 2018, from

Golden, T. (2013, February 24). How art gives shape to cultural change – Thelma Golden (TEDx). Retrieved March 6, 2018, from

Howe, A. (2015, June 12). Full Compilation of Kinetic Masterpieces by Anthony Howe. Retrieved December 13, 2017, from

(2011, September 22). Aeolus at the Eden Project. Retrieved December 12, 2017, from

Licht, A. (2009). Sound Art: Origins, development and ambiguities. Organised Sound14(1), 3-10.

(2015, March 10). Zader Sea Organ. Retrieved December 13, 2017, from

Mann, S. (2006, December 07). The Urban Beach Meets Steve Mann’s Hydraulophone. Retrieved March 2, 2018, from

Mazinani, S. (2015, June 30). Art + Activism – Sanaz Mazinani. Retrieved March 6, 2018, from

Music Box. (2018, February 18). Retrieved March 1, 2018, from

(2007, January 07). The Singing, Ringing Tree. Retrieved December 12, 2017, from

Wilson, M. (2016). The Purpose Of Art. Retrieved March 5, 2018, from

Wave Organ (2016, April 24). Wave Organ. Retrieved December 12, 2017, from

Van Tomme, N. March 11, 2009. (2013, May 17). Radical Sound Activism – FPIF. Retrieved March 8, 2018, from

Zhi, X. (2015, March 31). Pendas soundwave pierces the myrtle tree garden. Retrieved February 22, 2018, from


Being Jane Lane / Unwritten Law / Big Gay Day / SoCo OWeek / Straightline upcoming shows & supports


Being Jane Lane has a string of upcoming shows including securing the support slot for US punk band UNWRITTEN LAW at The Zoo in Brisbane on Feb 25th. The band has been busy in the studio working on their new album and follow up to the ‘SAILBOAT’ single with Guy Cooper from Human Records and Serotonin Productions.


Their hard work and infectiously high energy stage shows were rewarded last year, with the band winning the coveted PEOPLES CHOICE AWARD at the Gold Coast Music Awards and have also been added to the lineup for the 2018 Big Gay Day on March 11th. You can also catch the ladies tonight at Soco Oweek at the Parkwood Tavern on the Gold Coast with The Lonesomes and Cakes and also supporting German skate/thrash punkers Straightline and Melbournes Blind Man Death Stare on March 10th at the Bloodhound Bar in Brisbane.
Please get online and head to to check out the bands 2016 EP, the Sailboat single, upcoming shows and sign up to get the latest news and a free song download.





LANE-HARRY x IKE CAMPBELL THE DASH single hits 130,000k & 360 tour supports + Surfers Paradise LIVE shows


The latest single THE DASH from Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell is killing it on Spotify and with Triple J. Racking up over 35,000 listeners a month and just hit 130,000 plays on Spotify. The Gold Coast duo are also all set to support 360 on his ‘Vintage Modern’ tour next week for the Brisbane shows on March 3rd and 4th. 360 recently named them the artists to watch in 2018 (

Fresh from taking out album of the year at the Gold Coast music awards in 2017 for YOUTH, having poured countless hours into the writing and production of the album, the duo and label decided to make YOUTH a free album for all their fans that have helped bring them to where they are today, which you can check out at

360 Vintage Modern Tour

The boys are busy in the studio again working on a follow up to THE DASH and planning some upcoming live shows, including a free concert alongside Daryl Braithwaite, Jon Stevens and Kate Ceberano as part of the Surfers Paradise LIVE festival on the Gold Coast in May. 2018 is set to be a huge year for the duo and their indie label Human Records with some big announcements coming soon as they work on the new album CASABLANCA. Touring continues following shows supporting 360, Allday, Seth Sentry, Ivan Ooze, Tkay Maidza, David Dallas, Remi, USA hiphop lords Tech N9ne and Brother Ali.


Lane has also been busy working on his Saint Lane solo project down in Sydney with Dan from the Griswalds and Duestch Duke. The video for THE DASH is worth a watch ( filmed and directed by Swedish filmmaker Nils Nilsson (Pirates of the Caribbean, San Andreas) and Lane & Ike sparring off in Kung-Fu style battle.

The ethereal soundscape of Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell is not to be missed, an act that will go down as one of the defining sounds at the forefront of the golden era of hiphop music in Australia. The two charismatic young men plan on breaking past all creative ceilings and influence the artists of the future. Not only are they delivering gorgeous sounds and visuals but their mesmerizing fashion, emerging celebrity status & wild personalities are making them true game changers.

Generation Y has a new face and that face is that of Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell. Be sure to check out the new single at

Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell drop new single ‘Straight Facts’ with The Sickest

Oh yeah !!! NEW Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell single STRAIGHT FACTS is here. Thanks to The Sickest for exclusively launching the track.
The track is out now through Human Records on Spotify, Apple Music & Tidal for AUS/NZ listeners and will be available worldwide tomorrow!

New Charlie Rebel EP out today in Japan

YEAAAAAHHH!!! Our new ep STARE AT THE SUN is out today in Japan !!!!

We have some limited edition Japan CD’s available for you if you can’t get to the stores or shows in Japan. Simply hit up and sign up to the mailing list and you will be sent access to the new ep right now.

We have 9 shows across Japan over the next 12 days thanks to our Aussie label, Human Records. We will be tearing up stages from tomorrow night and are currently causing some havoc in Osaka.


1 - FfFDQxG

Charlie Rebel Japan Tour & New EP with Human Records Gold Coast.

Aw yeah !!! I knew I started a record label for a good reason!

I’ve been booking an 8 show Japan tour for one of my punk bands Charlie Rebel in June and I’m going to play some bass with them🤘 #4stringwin

They are fresh from supporting SpiderBait last month and we have a new EP on the go. It will be released on June 20th for the Japan leg of the tour & then back to Australia for the national tour.
A little bit of Gold Coast punk for Japan ! Super Sugoi !

Human Records Charlie Rebel 2017 Japan Tour
Atlantiqs, Osaka – June 21st
難波mele, Osaka – June 23rd
Art House, Kobe – June 24th
Sengoku Daitouryou, Osaka – June 25th
Club Kinoto, Tokyo – June 27th
Heaven’s Door, Tokyo – June 28th
Shinjuku 新宿Live Freak, Tokyo – June 30th
New Brand, Osaka – July 2nd

Charlie Rebel JAPAN Tour OSAKA
Charlie Rebel Japan Tour 2017 TOKYO

2017 Charlie Rebel JAPAN TOUR Poster

Migaloo’s Song Sculpture – Whale Shaped Kinetic Wind Harp

Sound and music follows a harmonic structure like that found in nature. There’s connection to our organic world utilising acoustics & science, to create harmony with our surroundings. Sound as humans perceive it, is an auditory perception of the brain’s response to vibrational patterns observed by our bodies. For me the combination of art, design and psychoacoustics creates a hidden link that resonates between nature and all life. Humpback whales are described as ‘inveterate composers’ of songs that are ‘strikingly similar’ to human musical traditions, a kinship we share with these mammals and a shared language. I am building a kinetic wind harp shaped like a whale with 3 rotating wind-powered turbines rotors that will ‘strum’ the strings and play a pre-composed song entitled “Migaloo’s Song” in 3 part harmony. The sculpture is a tribute to and connection of how I perceive art, music and nature in our world.

I2017-03-31 17.54.59 have applied for the SWELL Sculpture Festival in Sept 2017, but I’m moving ahead with the sculpture regardless. I’m making a 9.7 metre long Kinetic Wind Harp & Acoustic Sequencer shaped like Migaloo the White Whale. Construction has begun and I’m looking forward to being able to play this massive instrument. (

For whales, the mechanisms used to produce sound vary from one family of cetaceans to another. Marine mammals, such as whales, dolphins, and porpoises, are much more dependent on sound for communication and sensation than are land mammals, because other senses are of limited effectiveness in water. Sight is less effective for marine mammals because of the way particulates in the ocean scatter light. Smell is also limited, as molecules diffuse more slowly in water than in air, which makes smelling less effective. However, the speed of sound is roughly four times greater in water than in the atmosphere at sea level. Because sea mammals are so dependent on hearing to communicate and feed, environmentalists and cetologists are concerned that they are being harmed by the increased ambient noise in the world’s oceans caused by ships, sonar and marine seismic surveys.

The sculpture is a blend of the acoustic science and art to re-interpret the Humpback whale song and bring some wonder to the topic. I hope that it would inspire some viewers to further understand the interconnected world we live in and how these giant majestic mammals are similar to humans in song.

It’s the biggest instrument I’ve ever made, powered by the wind and it will play a pre-composed song in Emaj7, that follows the structure of the Humpback Whale songs.
Audio example of what it may sound like down here

I plan on tracking the harp when its finished and then getting some local musios onboard to jam and write a song with him and then drop a single and a whale at the same time.

2017-03-31 17.55.00The sculpture will be made of the following materials.

  • Steel harp strings
  • Steel tuning pegs
  • Copper piano wire
  • Steel frame, webbing and stand
  • Aluminium webbing for fins and tail.
  • Steel bells & Brass chime flues
  • Copper kinetic blade turbine
  • Steel washers & bolts
  • Tungsten welds
  • White & Blue UV Paint
  • Acrylic Feathers (white/blue)
  • Battery Powered Black Lights x4

One special whale we all know well on the Gold Coast, Migaloo the white humpback whale is a regular past Currumbin and I am dedicating this sculpture to him and the melody the sculpture produces is harmonically matched as a response to recordings of Humpback whale songs. A popular sight off Australia’s east coast, Migaloo is the world’s first documented all-white humpback whale. Aboriginal elders gave him the name, which means “white fella” in their language.

The sculpture will be playing a pre-composed melody sequence in 3 part harmony on the strings that surround the shape of the whale. 3 internal kinetic wind turbines will rotate with the wind and the outside edge of one will strum the strings as it passes around inside, generating the pre-composed melody “Migaloo’s Song” in the key of Emaj7 (See attached Score and link to Soundcloud example below). The fins and tail will also have wind chimes tuned to Emaj7, and the whole sculpture will sing in the wind. I have made a demo audio example and put it up here for you to listen. It won’t be loud or audible at around 50-60 meters away, but will be slightly louder than a normal acoustic harp up close.

The sculpture I’m building is an actual instrument to be played by the wind and also by people walking past that want to strum the strings and join in. I will be recording the sculpture in August at my studio by hand and with the wind. Then collaborating with a selection of local Gold Coast musicians to write and record a song around it. The track will be released to coincide with the festival and proceeds going to Sea Shepard (

The designs around the sculpture, the stand and on the turbine blades themselves will be based on patterns from sacred Geometry and the golden ratio.

The golden ratio is often associated with the Fibonacci sequence (0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, etc.) wherein any number in the sequence divided by its predecessor has an approximate value of 1.618. Moreover, each number in the sequence represents the sum of the two numbers that come before it. The Fibonacci sequence can then be used to graph an infinite logarithmic spiral based on units equated to each number in the sequence. This pattern is found a lot in nature from the arrangement of pedals on a flower to the crystal lattice of material science.

The track titled “Migaloo’s Song” is an original composition from myself and is based on the same structure as the songs from Humpback whales. Our hearing system is much higher in freq, but the whale songs seem to correlates to Emaj7, the key I have written the song in. (see humpback whale harmonic chart in the pics above)

The word “song” is used to describe the pattern of regular and predictable sounds made by some species of whales, notably the humpback whale. This is included with or in comparison with music, and male humpback whales have been described as “inveterate composers” of songs that are “‘strikingly similar’ to human musical traditions”. It has been suggested that humpback songs communicate male fitness to female whales.

The whale songs follow a distinct hierarchical structure. The base units of the whale song (sometimes loosely called the “notes“) are single uninterrupted emissions of sound that last up to a few seconds. These sounds vary in frequency from 15 Hz as a fundamental, but with harmonics reaching up to 9Khz at around 150dB (the typical human range of hearing is 20 Hz to 20 kHz). The units may be frequency modulated (i.e., the pitch of the sound may go up, down, or stay the same during the note) or amplitude modulated (get louder or quieter). However, the adjustment of bandwidth on a spectrogram representation of the song reveals the essentially pulsed nature of the FM sounds.


A collection of four or six units is known as a sub-phrase, lasting perhaps ten seconds. A collection of two sub-phrases is a phrase. A whale will typically repeat the same phrase over and over for two to four minutes. This is known as a theme. A collection of themes is known as a song. The whale will repeat the same song, which last up to 30 or so minutes, repeatedly over the course of hours or even days. This “Russian doll” hierarchy of sounds suggests a syntactic structure that is more human-like in its complexity than other forms of animal communication like bird songs, which have only linear structure.

All the whales in an area sing virtually the same song at any point in time and the song is constantly and slowly evolving over time. For example, over the course of a month a unit that started as an upsweep (increasing in frequency) might slowly flatten to become a constant note. Another unit may get steadily louder. The pace of evolution of a whale’s song also changes—some years the song may change quite rapidly, whereas in other years’ little variation may be recorded.


Research taken from,

Frankel, Adam S. “Sound production”, Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals, 1998, pp. 1126–1137. ISBN 0-12-551340-2.

Payne Roger, quoted in: Author(s): Susan Milius. “Music without Borders”, p. 253. Source: Science News, Vol. 157, No. 16, (15 April 2000), pp. 252-254. Published by: Society for Science & the Public.

Wright, A.J.; Walsh, A (2010). “Mind the gap: why neurological plasticity may explain seasonal interruption in humpback whale song”. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom. 90 (8): 1489–1491. doi:10.1017/s0025315410000913

idealized schematic of the song of a humpback whale.
Redrawn from Payne, et al. (1983)



Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell finalists in Gold Coast Music Awards for Album of the Year

Congratulations to Lane-Harry x Ike Campbell for being announced as a finalist for Album of the Year for the Gold Coast Music Awards for their album YOUTH (
Human Records

Along with the other finalists for Emerging Artist of the yr, Song of the yr, venue of the yr, Artist of the yr, Event of the yr and Video of the yr. Tesla Cøils, Hussy Hicks, Benny D Williams – Music, Amy Shark, Being Jane Lane,Felicity Lawless, Phoebe Sinclair, The Black Swamp, City Over Sand, Driven Fear, Marcus Blacke, Ella Fence, CC the Cat, Athena Joy, elsewhere,NightQuarter, Soundlounge, Miami Marketta, Expressive Ground and more.

And thanks to Scott Moose Wellington for the intern assist with the sound for the media call today. Guy Cooper – Producer – Serotonin Productions

Debut album from Mickey on the way

I”m currently working on an album for this cat, Mickey and we are just about finished the first single. We are heading into live show jamming and planning for the release in May.

He has such a colourful collection of songs and writing style.
You can check out his flow in the video below.

Guy Cooper – Producer – Serotonin Productions