Since the launch of consumer VR just two years ago, we’ve seen the platform change the face of gaming, film, and entertainment as we know it. Interactive media has become fully immersive, and traditionally passive experiences are imbued with new-found agency. Yet while we often think of VR in terms of graphics, frame rate, and visual fidelity, sound plays an increasingly important role in creating a sense of presence. Today, we’re excited to highlight three new music experiences on the Oculus Platform and take a look back at some of our sonic favorites.
TribeVR DJ School
The result of a partnership between Tribe VR, San Francisco-based music school Pyramind, and DJ Kryoman (Andy Moore), TribeVR DJ School merges immersive, hands-on education and the art of the mix on Rift.
“Pyramind has extensive experience in teaching and developing DJs and music producers,” explains CEO and Founder Gregory Gordon. “We see VR and AR as the next step in improving the way people learn and create music. We’re excited to be working with Tribe to develop methods and approaches for people to learn immersively.”
A Tahoe-based artist who’s toured with the likes of Steve Aoki, David Guetta, and the Black Eyed Peas, Kryoman provided some initial tracks for both lessons and free-play mode. Tribe VR is also working with him to develop future master classes and technical lesson content.
“I’m excited by the potential that VR offers the music industry,” Kryoman says. “VR opens up new ways for DJs and artists to connect with fans around the world, to make music production and DJing more accessible. This will change music for the better.”
A self-defined group of wannabe superstar DJs, the team at Tribe VR couldn't agree more. “We all love music and see VR as a way to remove the barriers to learning to DJ and produce music,” notes Co-Founder and CEO Tom Impallomeni. “It’s such a natural fit for VR—a multi-sensory experience that opens up a whole world of possibilities for learning and creation. We hope that fans enjoy their first taste of DJing in VR as much as we have!”
Spin, scratch, and mix your own tracks on Rift today.
Available in Early Access on Rift, NOYS VR marks a step toward the future of live performance with interactive venues designed specifically for VR. For the initial release, the developer collaborated with Stupid Goldfish to deliver a unique audiovisual experience in VR.
“Music and concerts are based on the connection between artists and their fans,” explain NOYS VR Co-Founders Fabio Buccheri and Pascal Kuemper. “VR, with its ability to stimulate multiple senses simultaneously, offers the perfect technology to bridge the artificial with the emotional.”
While the Early Access release will allow the team to get feedback from fans, future plans include a multiplayer update that lets you experience concerts with friends—as well as an open platform farther down the line.
“When we visited the people at NOYS VR, we didn’t know what to expect—but the moment we put on the Rift we knew we wanted to be a part of it,” Stupid Goldfish notes. “What an overwhelming experience. We’re definitely looking forward to the future of VR.”
Show It 2 Me
Available on both Rift and Gear VR, Show It 2 Me is an interactive music video for electronic duo Night Club’s single of the same name. Titmouse leveraged Tilt Brush’s audio reactive tools to bring this psychedelic experience to life in VR.
"For me, the Tilt Brush Toolkit is kind of the point where VR tips from being entertainment to being a creative tool,” notes Show It 2 Me Co-Director Dylan Carter.
Working alongside Night Club’s own Mark Brooks, Carter takes us on a ride of pulsating brains, demonic cars, and more—virtually anything that the Emmy Award-winning animation studio behind The Venture Bros. could dream up.
"With Tilt Brush, we’ve drawn everything from your mom with crab legs to your mom with tank legs and our recent favorite—disembodied tongue-mouths in Show It 2 Me,” says Titmouse Founder and President Chris Prynoski.
While they may not be fresh off the shelf, here are some oldies but goodies that hold a special place in our hearts:
With multiple difficulty settings, a compelling narrative, and 25 tracks across multiple genres, this is a new kind of arcade rhythm game.
From the musician and animator behind Surge, Apex debuted at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival and delivers what Wevr describes as “a surrealistic and darkly beautiful apocalyptic vision set to an original score.”
Hailed by WIRED as “the best example of VR’s potential so far,” Tyler Hurd’s psychedelic masterpiece marries Future Islands with a joyful dose of insanity. Hungry for more? Check out Chocolate!
Rock Band VR
With 60 playable tracks, classic game mode, campaign mode, and leaderboards, Rock Band VR brings one of rhythm gaming’s most beloved franchises to life like never before.
A 2016 Oculus Launch Pad Scholarship winner available on both Rift and Gear VR, Starship Disco is a VR rhythm shooter that lets you import your own music or blast away to stock disco jams.
Whether you’re an aspiring DJ, air guitar virtuoso, art fan, or rhythm junky, chances are there’s a VR experience with your name on it—and even more to follow in the months to come. Keep an eye on the Oculus Store for the latest and greatest music releases on both Rift and Gear VR.
— The Oculus Team