Toa Mata Band is the first LEGO band ever
The power of imagination certainly has no boundaries. When you give a kid a box of Lego bricks, leave him or her alone, and after some time, you would most probably end up with something totally new and never thought of before. Recently, I saw an ad that went somewhere along the lines of “boys will never grow old of their toys”, but rather, they just change them. Italian music producer Giuseppe Acito is no longer a boy, but he still has use for Lego bricks, and his ingenuity has come up with what he has called the “Toa Mata Band”, where it is comprised of a handful of small, robotic Lego figures that have been programmed to play a range of musical instruments, no less.
You can more or less say that each “member” of the band has been constructed from Lego Bionicle pieces, and these have been rigged with rubber bands as well as pulleys. Their arms were controlled by an Arduino Uno that has been hooked to an iPad that runs Nord Beat, which is a MIDI sequencer app. These small robots will be able to “perform” a MIDI sequence as they go around hitting the instrument that they face whenever prompted.
Acito has managed to use a range of different synthesizers and drum machines to date, where among them include a fair number of vintage equipment to eke out tunes that will help you shake your booty. The way the bots have been set up allow them to perform a pre-programmed song, or to even play live with a human operator that is capable of sizing up the situation, before throwing in more commands to the MIDI sequence in real-time.
Unfortunately for the rest of the world, Acito has come up with just a single prototype at this point in time, making this truly a one-of-a-kind.