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MIDI Mates: Pacman And Steve Reich Mashed Into One Epic Performance Piece

Tacit Group fused a legendary minimal composition with a legendary minimal video game. Makes sense.

by Zach Sokol
06 March 2014, 5:05pm

The soundtrack to Pac Man might be ingrained in our collective 8-bit conscious, but the chomping sounds and bleep-bloops that ring out when the circular protagonist munches on a ghost could use a remix.

Algorithm composers and audiovisual designers, Tacit Group, have answered our desire with "Six Pacmen," a performance piece that integrates the legendary composition "Six Pianos" by experimental musician Steve Reich, a hyper-cited inspiration for many electronic musicians. 

"Six Pacman," includes six performers who collectively play the game and all need to level-up before the next measure of the Reich song is reached. And to finish the game, the performers need to "finish" all measures of "Six Pianos," despite not actually playing any instruments. 

Tacit Group known for turning video games into live music—as detailed in our 2012 doc on the Korean artists—and this combination of a minimalist video game with a minimalist composition is a rich fusion that makes sense. Come to think of it, the delicate-yet-churning piece by Reich almost sounds like a sharpened, orchestral version of some classic arcade MIDI noises. 

Regardless, Tacit Group always proves that video games and music can and should be mashed together. It's even cooler that they combine the two art forms into one live performance. 

Re-visit our past documentary on Tacit Group below:

H/T Animal New York