Don’t call it a comeback … actually, yeah, it’s a comeback. Google’s Blob Opera digital experiment, a curiosity that became a brief sensation last December, will be back for tomorrow’s Google I/O keynote speech. Google took to Twitter to make the announcement:
🎵 #GoogleIO returns to the stage tomorrow with a special pre-show performance from @tuneyards and #BlobOpera at 9:40am Pacific. You won’t want to miss this → https://t.co/wBH2qvmwmY pic.twitter.com/XHA2LlcMwW
— Google (@Google) May 17, 2021
Blob Opera is a set of four digitally-produced voices, synthesized with machine learning and synced to dynamic animations of some Sesame Street-grade claymation creatures. With the combination of bass, tenor, mezzo-soprano, and soprano voices, it was possible to create passable dynamic music on the fly … or easily manipulate them into recognizable tunes. The result is something that aaaaaaalmost sounds like professional singers, if you close your eyes and ignore the lack of actual words.
The jiggling is almost… hypnotic…
Since there’s no in-person Google I/O this year as Google deals with the continuing fallout of the pandemic, the usual live musical guests aren’t an option. What better way to demonstrate its machine learning prowess, and provide a little levity for a dry developer conference, than bring back the memetic potential of four blobby opera singers?
If you’re not a fan of the Blob Opera, don’t worry, they won’t have to carry the entire show on their own. Lo-fi pop duo Tune-Yards will be there as well, presumably with a pre-recorded performance. But we all know who the real stars will be.