Olivine Trees
Eduardo R Miranda - 1999

Olivine Trees is perhaps the first piece of electroacoustic music ever composed using a high-performance parallel computer. The piece is specifically composed using sounds synthesised by Chaosynth on the Connection Machine cm-200 COMPUTR. Chaosynth is a sound synthesis systems developed by Miranda at Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC). The synthesis technique of Chaosynth is inspired by the granular synthesis technique; it functions by generating a large amount of short sonic events, or particles, in order to form larger, complex sound events. It produces a wide range of bubbling sounds in various flow speeds and tone colours; most sounds resemble the morphology of the sounds of flowing water.

Olivine Trees is inspired by Van Gogh's painting, Olive Trees. The varied and individually identifiable brush strokes of this painting inspired the composition of the sounds of the piece; in direct correlation, colour relates to timbre and length of brush stroke relates to the duration of individual "granular" sounds. Other signal processing techniques, such as convolution, were also used during the mixing process at the University of Edinburgh's electroacoustic music studio.