News and Events

Article published in the Journal of New Music Research
As part of our research on flamenco music (see COFLA), Emilia Gómez has participated on a study, published in JNMR, to compare mathematical to perceptual rhythmic similarity measures in flamenco music. This work has been carried out in collaboration with CIRMMT (McGill University) and Polytechnic University of Madrid.

6 Dec 2009 - 22:27 | view
Seminar by Stefan Bilbao on Physical Modeling

On Thursday, December 3rd 2009, at 3pm in room 52.321, Stefan Bilbao from the University of Edinburgh, will give a seminar as an introduction to the Physical Modeling of musical instruments.

Abstract: There are lots of ways of going about designing physical modelling sound synthesis routines; probably the best known are digital waveguides, which are a great match to certain instrument types (1D, nearly linear, nearly dispersionless). Another well-known technique is modal synthesis, which was developed into the Modalys/MOSAIC environment at IRCAM. This talk is devoted to time-domain methods, and in particular, finite difference schemes, which are perhaps unfamiliar to the audio engineer; there are no delay lines, digital filters, Fourier transforms, or banks of oscillators employed! The great things about these methods are their  generality, their fidelity to the physics of musical instruments and that they can be very easy to construct---there are no hypotheses about travelling waves, or linearity, or modal frequencies. The downside is that they may cost more to run, in terms of computational effort, and that there are all sorts of quirky design issues, such as numerical stability, bandwidth limitation and others to contend with! Sound examples, and possibly a piece generated in the Matlab language, will be presented. 

1 Dec 2009 - 09:45 | view
New large research project with BMAT
BMAT, one of our spin-offs, has obtained a large project funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation under the program CENIT. As part of the project BMAT will subcontract an important part of research to the MTG. The project is called BUSCAMEDIA and it is focused on the development of a complete system of multimedia search. The goal is to develop automatic technologies for semantic search of multimedia content. BMAT and the MTG will work on the audio part of the project and other spanish companies and universities will work on the text, image and video part.
27 Nov 2009 - 16:46 | view
Call for Participation to SMC2010
The SMC Conference is the forum for international exchanges around the core interdisciplinary topics of Sound and Music Computing. SMC 2010 will feature lectures, posters/demos, musical/sonic works, tutorials and other types of events. The SMC Summer School will take place just before the Conference and it will aim at giving an opportunity to young researchers interested in the field to learn about some of the core interdisciplinary topics and to share their own experiences with other young researchers.

Important dates:
Deadline for submissions of tutorial proposals: Friday 9 April 2010
Deadline for submissions of papers and music: Friday 23 April 2010
Deadline for applications to the Summer School: Friday 30 April 2010
Notification of tutorial proposals acceptances: Monday 3 May 2010
Notification of acceptance to Summer School: Monday 17 May 2010
Notification of paper and music acceptances: Monday 24 May 2010
Deadline for submission of camera-ready papers: Monday 14 June 2010
SMC 2010 School: Saturday 17 - Tuesday 20 2010
SMC 2010 tutorials: Wednesday 21 July 2010
SMC 2010 Conference: Thursday 22 - Saturday 24 July 2010

The topics to be covered at the Conference are all the core ones in Sound and Music Computing research, thus topics that can be grouped into: Processing of sound and music signals; Understanding and modeling sound and music; Interfaces for sound and music; Assisted sound and music creation.

Call for papers:
SMC 2010 will include paper presentations as both lectures and poster/demos and we invite submissions examining all the core areas of the Sound and Music Computing field. All submissions will be peer-reviewed according to their novelty, technical content, presentation, and contribution to the overall balance of topics represented at the conference. Paper submissions should have a maximum of 8 pages including figures and references. Accepted papers will be designated to be presented either as posters/demos or as lectures. More details are available here.

Call for music:
SMC 2010 will include six concerts in a hall with an octophonic system and we invite submissions that explore and take advantage of recently or newly developed technologies related to Sound and Music Computing. Three of the concerts will feature performers and interactive computer systems, one concert will feature the ESMUC laptop orchestra, another concert will feature the Reactable and another concert will be around We specially welcome works by novel composers and the length of the pieces should not be longer than 10 minutes. For each concert a designated curator will put together the program from the submitted works. More details are available here.

SMC2010 will take place at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain, and it is jointly organized by the Music Technology Group of the UPF, Phonos Foundation and the Department of Sonology of ESMUC.


11 Nov 2009 - 09:50 | view
Alfonso Perez defends his PhD Thesis on November 13th
Alfonso Perez defends his PhD thesis entitled “Enhancing Spectral Synthesis Techniques with Performance Gestures using the Violin as a Case Study" on Friday 13th of November 2009 at 10:00hin the Auditorium Mercè Rodoreda at the Ciutadella Campus of theUniversitat Pompeu Fabra (Ramon Trias Fargas, 25-27, Barcelona).

The members of the jury are: Xavier Binefa (UPF), Ana Barjau (UniversitatPolitecnica de Catalunya), Anders Askenfelt (Stockholm Royal Institute ofTechnology), Vesa Valimaki (Helsinki University of Technology), Rafael Ramirez (UPF).

Thesis abstract:
In this work we investigate new sound synthesis techniques forimitating musical instruments using the violin as a case study. It is amultidisciplinary research, covering several fields such as spectralmodeling, machine learning, analysis of musical gestures or musicalacoustics. It addresses sound production with a very empiricalapproach, based on the analysis of performance gestures as well as onthe measurement of acoustical properties of the violin. Based on thecharacteristics of the main vibrating elements of the violin, we dividethe study into two parts, namely bowed string and violin body soundradiation. With regard to the bowed string, we are interested inmodeling the influence of bowing controls on the spectrum of stringvibration. To accomplish this task we have developed a sensing systemfor accurate measurement of the bowing parameters. Analysis of realperformances allows a better understanding of the bowing control space,its use by performers and its effect on the timbre of the soundproduced. Besides, machine learning techniques are used to design agenerative timbre model that is able to predict spectral envelopescorresponding to a sequence of bowing controls. These envelopes canthen be filled with harmonic and noisy sound components to produce asynthetic string-vibration signal. In relation to the violin body, anew method for measuring acoustical violin-body impulse responses hasbeen conceived, based on bowed glissandi and a deconvolution algorithmof non-impulsive signals. Excitation is measured as string vibrationand responses are recorded with multiple microphones placed atdifferent angles around the violin, providing complete radiationpatterns at all frequencies. Both the results of the bowed string andthe violin body studies have been incorporated into a violinsynthesizer prototype based on sample concatenation. Predictedenvelopes of the timbre model are applied to the samples as atime-varying filter, which entails smoother concatenations and phrasesthat follow the nuances of the controlling gestures. These transformedsamples are finally convolved with a body impulse response to recreatea realistic violin sound. The different impulse responses used canenhance the listening experience by simulating different violins, oreffects such as stereo or violinist motion. Additionally, anexpressivity model has been integrated into the synthesizer, addingexpressive features such as timing deviations, dynamics or ornaments,thus augmenting the naturalness of the synthetic performances.

7 Nov 2009 - 18:37 | view
Esteban Maestre defends his PhD Thesis on November 12th

Esteban Maestre defends his PhD thesis entitled “Modeling Instrumental Gestures: An Analysis/Synthesis Framework for Violin Bowing" on Thursday 12th of Nomvember 2009 at 15:00h in the Auditorium Mercè Rodoreda at the Ciutadella Campus of the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Ramon Trias Fargas, 25-27, Barcelona).

The members of the jury are: Josep Blat (UPF), Rafael Ramirez (UPF), Marcelo M. Wanderley (McGill University), Vesa Valimaki (Helsinki University of Technology),José A. Rodriguez-Fonollosa (Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya).

This dissertation presents a comprehensive data-driven study for computationally addressing the problem of modeling the performer’s role of transforming the discrete information appearing in an annotated musical score into the continuous physical actions driving sound production in bowed string practice. The dissertation introduces and validates a systematic approach to the acquisition, representation, modeling, and synthesis of bowing patterns in violin classical performance. Synthetic bowing parameter controls obtained from a written score are used to drive sound generation by means of both a physical model and a sample-based synthesizer.

7 Nov 2009 - 18:30 | view
El MTG col·labora amb l'exposició "Les Veus de la Mediterrània"
El MTG ha creat dues instal·lacións visuals d'anàlisi i representació de paràmetres dinàmics i espectrals de la veu a "Les Veus de la Mediterrània", una exposició que formarà part del Museu de la Mediterrània de Torroella de Montgrí (Girona). Les dues instal·lacions que ha programat l'Oscar Mayor consisteixen en sistemes que capten la veu del visitant de l'exposició, l'analitzen i la representen visualment a uns monitors, a temps real, mostrant diferents paràmetres de la veu com poden ser el volum, l'espectre, la freqüencia fonamental o l'espectrograma.

L'exposició "Les Veus de la Mediterrània" s'inaugura al casino de Manresa el dijous 5 de Novembre a les 7 de la tarda, en el marc de la Fira de la Mediterrània, on estarà durant dos mesos i també es podra visitar al Museu de la Mediterrània a Torroella de Montgrí a partir del 8 de març de 2010.
2 Nov 2009 - 14:18 | view
Workshop on Performance Gestures and Sound Generation
On November 12-13, 2009 in the Auditori Mercè Rodoreda at the Ciutadella Campus of the UPF and on the occasion of the PhD Defenses of Esteban Maestre and Alfonso Pérez, we are glad to announce the Workshop on Performance Gestures and Sound Generation. The workshop, aimed at providing an oveview of current research in the area of musical performance gestures and sound generation techniques, will consist on invited talks by experts in the field and a series of short presentations on related topics.
27 Oct 2009 - 22:58 | view
Big participation of the MTG at ISMIR 2009

At ISMIR 2009 the MTG will have the biggest participation ever, including 3 oral presentations, 6 posters, 1 special talk, 5 demos, and 7 successful entries to MIREX.

The 10th International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference, to be held this year in Kobe, Japan, from October 26th to 30th, is the reference conference for those researchers working in automatic music description and annotation, content and context analysis of music, automatic transcription, music recommendation or playlist generation.

The MTG has been present there since the very first edition held in Plymouth, MA, in 2000, and we even organized here in Barcelona the 2004 edition. The research field gained momentum some years ago, and now it seems that we are recollecting some fruits for all those effort because the current edition it will count with an impressive participation of MTG members and contributions. In the oral presentations track, we will present

In poster sessions we will show

Reaching the 10th edition of a conference calls for some maturity in the discipline and also acts as a trigger for self-reflection. As a consequence, a special session on the future of MIR has been scheduled and it will be hosting an oral presentation titled

Demos will also be present there with:

  • "Assessing the Results of a Cover Song Identification System with coverSSSSearch" (Joan Serrà),
  • "Mood Cloud 2.0: Music Mood Browsing based on Social Networks" (Cyril Laurier, Mohamed Sordo, Perfecto Herrera),
  • "PHAROS: An Audiovisual Search Platform using Music Information Retrieval Techniques" (Cyril Laurier, Mohamed Sordo, Alessandro Bozzon, Marco Brambilla, et al.),
  • "MyMTV: A Personalized and Interactive Music Channel" (Oscar Mayor, Owen Meyers, Cyril Laurier, Markus Koppenberger), and
  • "QueryBag: Using Different Sources For Querying Large Music Collections" (Mohamed Sordo, Òscar Celma, Cyril Laurier).

To conclude, the fifth running of the Music Information Retrieval Evaluation eXchange (MIREX), a worldwide evaluation of algorithms addressed to MIR-related problems, also counted with excellent submissions from our lab. Among the 16 proposed problems (including query by singing, beat detection, chord detection, or melody extraction), we participated in 7 and, as the table shows, we achieved top-ranking results:


MTG's Best

 Audio Classical Composer Identification 
 1  17
 Audio Genre Classification (Latin set)
 5  17
 Audio Genre Classification (Mixed set) 
 4  17
 Audio Music Mood Classification  3  17
 Audio Cover Song Identification (Mixed set)  1  3
 Audio Cover Song Identification (Mazurka set)  1  3
 Audio Music Similarity and Retrieval 
 2  9









All available results (also from other tasks) are here:

There are short descriptions of the MTG submissions for the classification tasks, for the cover task and for the similarity and retrieval task. The MTG involved team included J. Serrà, M. Zanin and R. Andrzejak (Cover Song Identification), N. Wack, E. Guaus, C. Laurier, O. Meyers, R. Marxer, D. Bogdanov, J. Serrà, and P. Herrera (for the Composer Identification, Mood and Genre Classification), and D. Bogdanov, J. Serrà, N. Wack, and P. Herrera for the Music Similarity task. All these results will be presented by means of posters in a special session devoted to MIREX results.

19 Oct 2009 - 16:53 | view
Master thesis finished in 2009 available on line
13 Oct 2009 - 10:18 | view