Virtual Instrument Jazz Performance Crosses The Uncanny Valley

In this video, Roger Gentile performs his virtual instrument arrangement of the jazz standard, When I Fall In Love, by Victor Young.

While percussive sounds have long been sampled or synthesized with reasonably realistic results, until recently, attempts at creating realistic solo brass performances have often sounded cheesy or ‘uncanny valley’ off.

In this performance, though, Gentile plays Audio Modeling’s SWAM Flugelhorn – a physical modeling instrument, running on an iPad- creating a performance that’s very realistic and, more importantly, musically expressive.

Here’s what he shared about the technical details:

In this recording, the following instruments were used:

Swam Flugelhorn, Yamaha KX88 with BC3, Midisolutions Breath controller, CME Widimaster, Hammond B3 and GSi Burn.

SWAM (Synchronous Waves Acoustic Modeling) is a synthesis approach that combines concepts of Physical Modeling and Behavioral Modeling. Swam Flugelhorn uses Audio Modeling’s SWAM-B engine, which synthesizes instruments using pure Physical Modeling, so there are no samples used.

Check out the performance and share your thoughts on it in the comments!