Interactive Kick is an experiment looking at two main factors. Firstly the idea of an interactive music experience (or application). Secondly, how to build an intuitive user interface. Within this text I want to offer reasoning for particular decisions and briefly discuss the process used.

The main way of consuming music currently is through music streaming services. According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) around 89% of music is consumed in this way. These streaming services offer a linear, on demand listening experience. The intention of this application is to look at creating an interactive listening experience using a simple interface with six slider controls, and play/quit buttons.

The sliders control various instrument delays, one pitch control, and a master volume. When the delay and pitch sliders are changed they offer instant and obvious feedback to the user. The delay settings can add effects to some of the instruments and disrupt the rhythm of others. It is up to the user to decide on how to liberally to use the effects, and whether or not to 'set and forget', or constantly adjust them as the music progresses.

The music is set to loop after around the four minute mark. Depending on the settings of the sliders at the end of the piece, the loop can be barely noticeable (due to the delays carrying sound from the end section to the beginning).

Minimal instruction was given on the interface itself and there is no additional information provided. 'Press play & move sliders to interact', along with labels on the sliders themselves is the only information offered. This was to encourage user exploration and try to get an understanding of how intuitive the user interface is.

A few questions that has arisen for me whilst creating this application are:

Does user interaction positively or negatively impact the experience? Would this idea of a music application feel like a novelty? Something exciting that would wear off relatively quickly? Or would the chance of setting music to taste by the user be appealing? On the flip side, how would this idea affect the output from composers/producers? Would this be something that is embraced, or overstepping their territory? Would the music require being composed in a different way than 'usual'?