Robots – The Exhibition Soundtrack


by Coda to Coda
Released: 08 Feb 2017


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“When we were asked to create a soundscape for the Science Museum’s Robots exhibition, we got really excited about the idea of creating something for the entire space which was itself robotic; whose musical behavior was algorithmic as well as scripted. In other words, we envisioned the soundscape as a series of complementary musical machines each of which would generate their own unique soundscape according to certain parameters; a ‘musical robot’ in its own right that would help animate the narratives and space of the exhibition. 

We were given recording access to some amazing robots and machines, sourced recordings of others through archives and also designed and programmed our own interpretations where necessary. All of these elements underpin the main themes of the exhibition: Marvel, Obey, Dream, Build, Imagine and Embodied Intelligence. 

This album compiles a selection of excerpts from across the whole soundscape both as a kind of mnemonic through which you can relive the experience of visiting the exhibition and as a document of this unique collection, charting humanity’s incredible 500 year journey of creating humanoid robots.”

  1. Wells Cathedral Clock (1392) 00:22
  2. Clockwork Polyrhythms 00:46
  3. Model English Lever Escapement (1754) 00:13
  4. Increasing Complexity 00:55
  5. Singing Bird Automaton (1784) 00:12
  6. Celestial Mechanisms 02:36
  7. Looms, Automata, Deception and the Industrial Revolution (1770 – 1840) 02:58
  8. Shortwave Dreams (1930s – 1940s) 01:19
  9. Cocktail Music For Robots (1940s – 1950s) 01:18
  10. Cinematic Revelations (1950s – 1960s) 02:05
  11. Science Fiction (1970s) 02:03
  12. Cybernetic Visions (1980s – 1990s) 01:52
  13. Vision 02:08
  14. Manipulation 01:39
  15. Learning 01:44
  16. Recreation 00:57
  17. The Workplace 00:55
  18. Of An Evening (with ‘Harry’, his robotic musicians and hosts) 01:44
  19. Cafe Life 00:50
  20. An Algorithmic Future? 05:23