As the arms race over which DJ can have the sickest LEDs heats up (last time I checked, the mau5 still held ground over Skrillex), one unlikely musician just outclassed them all.
The good people at Ableton recently profiled Nobody Beats The Drum, a Dutch electro artist who added a giant Tesla coil to his set. “If I had stuck my finger through it, I'd be very dead,” NBTD's Sjam Sjamsoedin told the music software company.
Even cooler, the electricity from the coil reacts to the music and is controlled with a MIDI (musical instrument digital interface). When asked about adding an electric death-ball to his set, Sjamsoedin responded, “We wanted to do something special for the Night Of Arts And Science festival in Groningen. I've always been very interested in this amazing lightning machine and our album Currents is loosely inspired by the genius of Nikola Tesla, so this was a logical step.”
For sound, to match the visual intensity of actual lightning, Sjamsoedin uses his laptop with Ableton Live, the performance tool that really becomes an instrument of its own. (FYI, aspiring electronic artists, you can get it 20% off until January 15.)
“I tried to create tension throughout the set,” added Sjamsoedin, “so the coil buzzed subtly at the beginning and throughout the set I built it up towards an epic finale.”
You can watch video of his intense coil-backed performance below.