0110.be logo

Articles Tagged 'ISMIR'

~ SyncSink.wasm - Synchronize media files by audio-to-audio alignment

I have built a tool for audio-to-audio alignment. It has applications for synchronization of media files. It works in the browser and you can synchronize your media files here with SyncSink.wasm. SyncSink.wasm does the following:

  1. From an incoming media-file audio is extracted, downmixed to mono and and resampled. This is done with ffmpeg.audio.wasm a wasm version of ffmpeg.
  2. For each audio track, fingerprints are extracted. These fingerprints reduce the the search space for alignment drastically.
  3. Each list of fingerprints is aligned with the list of fingerprints from the reference. Resulting in a rough alignment
  4. Cross correlation is done to refine the alignment resulting in sample accurate results.

Fig: media synchronization with audio-to-audio alignment.

It supports small time-scale adjustments of around 5%: audio alignment can still be found if audio speed differs a bit.

Some potential use cases where it might be of use:

The code can be found in the SyncSink.wasm GitHub repository

~ ISMIR 2018 Conference - Automatic Analysis Of Global Music Recordings suggests Scale Tuning Universals

Thanks to the support of a travel grant by the faculty of Arts and Philosophy of Ghent University I was able to attend the ISMIR 2018 conference. A conference on Music Information Retrieval. I am co author on a contribution for the the Late-Breaking / Demos session

The structure of musical scales has been proposed to reflect universal acoustic principles based on simple integer ratios. However, some studying tuning in small samples of non-Western cultures have argued that such ratios are not universal but specific to Western music. To address this debate, we applied an algorithm that could automatically analyze and cross-culturally compare scale tunings to a global sample of 50 music recordings, including both instrumental and vocal pieces. Although we found great cross-cultural diversity in most scale degrees, these preliminary results also suggest a strong tendency to include the simplest possible integer ratio within the octave (perfect fifth, 3:2 ratio, ~700 cents) in both Western and non-Western cultures. This suggests that cultural diversity in musical scales is not without limit, but is constrained by universal psycho-acoustic principles that may shed light on the evolution of human music.

~ TISMIR journal article - A Case for Reproducibility in MIR: Replication of ‘A Highly Robust Audio Fingerprinting System’

As an extension of the ISMIR conferences the International Society for Music Information Retrievel started a new journal: TISMIR. The first issue contains an article of mine:
A Case for Reproducibility in MIR: Replication of ‘A Highly Robust Audio Fingerprinting System’. The abstract can be read here:

Claims made in many Music Information Retrieval (MIR) publications are hard to verify due to the fact that (i) often only a textual description is made available and code remains unpublished – leaving many implementation issues uncovered; (ii) copyrights on music limit the sharing of datasets; and (iii) incentives to put effort into reproducible research – publishing and documenting code and specifics on data – is lacking. In this article the problems around reproducibility are illustrated by replicating an MIR work. The system and evaluation described in ‘A Highly Robust Audio Fingerprinting System’ is replicated as closely as possible. The replication is done with several goals in mind: to describe difficulties in replicating the work and subsequently reflect on guidelines around reproducible research. Added contributions are the verification of the reported work, a publicly available implementation and an evaluation method that is reproducible.

~ ISMIR 2014 - Panako - A Scalable Acoustic Fingerprinting System Handling Time-Scale and Pitch Modification

Panako poster At ISMIR 2014 i will present a paper on a fingerprinting system. ISMIR is the annual conference of the International Society for Music Information Retrieval is the world’s leading interdisciplinary forum on accessing, analyzing, and organizing digital music of all sorts. This years instalment takes place in Taipei, Taiwan. My contribution is a paper titled Panako – A Scalable Acoustic Fingerprinting System Handling Time-Scale and Pitch Modification, it will be presented during a poster session the 27th of October.

This paper presents a scalable granular acoustic fingerprinting system. An acoustic fingerprinting system uses condensed representation of audio signals, acoustic fingerprints, to identify short audio fragments in large audio databases. A robust fingerprinting system generates similar fingerprints for perceptually similar audio signals. The system presented here is designed to handle time-scale and pitch modifications. The open source implementation of the system is called Panako and is evaluated on commodity hardware using a freely available reference database with fingerprints of over 30,000 songs. The results show that the system responds quickly and reliably on queries, while handling time-scale and pitch modifications of up to ten percent.

The system is also shown to handle GSM-compression, several audio effects and band-pass filtering. After a query, the system returns the start time in the reference audio and how much the query has been pitch-shifted or time-stretched with respect to the reference audio. The design of the system that offers this combination of features is the main contribution of this paper.

The system is available, together with documentation and information on how to reproduce the results from the ISMIR paper, on the Panako website. Also available for download is the Panako poster, Panako ISMIR paper and the Panako poster.

~ ISMIR 2012 - Highlights

Logo ISMIR 2012The 13th International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference took place in Porto, Portugal, October 8th-12th, 2012. This text contains links to some papers, toolkits, software presented there which are interesting for my research. Basically it contains my personal highlights of the conference. The ISMIR 2012 is described as follows:

The annual Conference of the International Society for Music Information Retrieval (ISMIR) is the world’s leading research forum on processing, searching, organizing and accessing music-related data. The revolution in music distribution and storage brought about by digital technology has fueled tremendous research activities and interests in academia as well as in industry. The ISMIR Conference reflects this rapid development by providing a meeting place for the discussion of MIR-related research, developments, methods, tools and experimental results. Its main goal is to foster multidisciplinary exchange by bringing together researchers and developers, educators and librarians, as well as students and professional users.


I saw an interesting tutorial on Jazz music and a tutorial on source separation. After an introduction, which detailed the experimental basis of the system, a source separator was introduced. The REPET source separator is a relatively simple system that yields reasonable results to split accompaniment from foreground melody.

Posters & Talks

The approach and the dataset used in N-gram Based Statistical Makam Detection on Makam Music in Turkey Using Symbolic Data is very interesting. More than 800 pieces of makam music where transcribed manually and analysed. Details about the dataset are available in the following paper: A Turkish Makam Music Symbolic Database for Music Information Retrieval: SymbTr.

Assigning a Confidence Threshold on Automatic Beat Annotation in Large Datasets by Zapata et al. shows a very interesting way to do exactly what the title says. Descriptive titles are descriptive.

A very practical tool to do melody extraction was presented by Justin Salamon. He created a Vamp Plugin with the name Melodia. Unfortunately the plugin is currently only available for windows, but Linux and OS X versions are in the pipeline. More about the algorithm implemented and background information can be found in the paper Justin presented: Statistical Characterisation of Melodic Pitch Contours and its Application for Melody Extraction. Another Vamp Plugin for melody visualization was also presented: Pitch Content Visualization Tools for Music Performance Analysis.

The ongoing work by Ceril Bohak and Matija Marolt on segmentation of folk music could be very useful to apply on Afican musics. The paper is called Finding Repeating Stanzas in Folk Songs.

~ PeachNote Piano demo at ISMIR 2011

The 21st of October a demo of PeachNote Piano was given at the ISMIR 2011 conference. The demo raised some interest.

The extended abstract about PeachNote Piano can be found on the ISMIR 2011 schedule.

A previous post about PeachNote Piano has more technical details together with a video showing the core functionality (quasi-instantaneous USB-BlueTooth-MIDI communication).

~ Tarsos presentation at 'ISMIR 2011'

Tarsos LogoOlmo Cornelis and myself just gave a presentation about Tarsos at the at the 12th International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference which is held at Miami.

The live demo we gave went well and we got a lot of positive, interesting feedback. The presentation about Tarsos is available here.

It was the first time in the history of ISMIR that there was a session with oral presentations about Non-Western Music. We were pleased to be part of this.

The peer reviewed paper about our work: Tarsos – a Platform to Explore Pitch Scales in Non-Western and Western Music is available from the ISMIR website and embedded below:

~ PeachNote Piano at the ISMIR 2011 demo session

PeachNote Piano SchemaThe extended abstract about PeachNote Piano has been accepted as a demonstration presentation to appear at the ISMIR 2011 conference in Miami. To know more about PeachNote Piano come see us at our demo stand (during the Late Breaking and Demo Session) or read the paper: Peachnote Piano: Making MIDI instruments social and smart using Arduino, Android and Node.js. What follows here is the introduction of the extended abstract:

Playing music instruments can bring a lot of joy and satisfaction, but not all apsects of music practice are always enjoyable. In this contribution we are addressing two such sometimes unwelcome aspects: the solitude of practicing and the “dumbness” of instruments.

The process of practicing and mastering of music instruments often takes place behind closed doors. A student of piano spends most of her time alone with the piano. Sounds of her playing get lost, and she can’t always get feedback from friends, teachers, or, most importantly, random Internet users. Analysing her practicing sessions is also not easy. The technical possibility to record herself and put the recordings online is there, but the needed effort is relatively high, and so one does it only occasionally, if at all.

Instruments themselves usually do not exhibit any signs of intelligence. They are practically mechanic devices, even when implemented digitally. Usually they react only to direct actions of a player, and the player is solely responsible for the music coming out of the insturment and its quality. There is no middle ground between passive listening to music recordings and active music making for someone who is alone with an instrument.

We have built a prototype of a system that strives to offer a practical solution to the above problems for digital pianos. From ground up, we have built a system which is capable of transmitting MIDI data from a MIDI instrument to a web service and back, exposing it in real-time to the world and optionally enriching it.

A previous post about PeachNote Piano has more technical details together with a video showing the core functionality (quasi-instantaneous USB-BlueTooth-MIDI communication). Some photos can be found below.

~ Tarsos at 'ISMIR 2011'

Tarsos LogoA paper about Tarsos was submitted for review at the 12th International Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference which will be held in Miami. The paper Tarsos – a Platform to Explore Pitch Scales in Non-Western and Western Music was reviewed and accepted, it will be published in this year’s proceedings of the ISMIR conference. It can be read below as well.

An oral presentation about Tarsos is going to take place Tuesday, the 25 of October during the afternoon, as can be seen on the ISMIR preliminary program schedule.

If you want to cite our work, please use the following data:

  author     = {Joren Six and Olmo Cornelis},
  title      = {Tarsos - a Platform to Explore Pitch Scales 
                in Non-Western and Western Music},
  booktitle  = {Proceedings of the 12th International 
                Society for Music Information Retrieval Conference,
                ISMIR 2011},
  year       = {2011},
  publisher  = {International Society for Music Information Retrieval}