Archive Scent-of-Sound: A short story of “Polar Lights”




Germany, 1996

Are you the one who is still convinced that mathematics is just an abstract and boring science?


Here is the proof to the contrary. And of course it is an artistic one, full of enjoyment and surprise.

While we were developing a new biofeedback software we found a very effective method to convert brain-wave patterns into graphics. We made further efforts to use this method not only for graphics, but also to generate sequences of sound.

The result was fascinating! We perceived melodies of beautiful harmony and expression. Although we have been working with fractal and computer generated music for more than 10 years we were very amazed.


Robert Stoeffler

Andrzej Slawinski

So we decided to produce a CD together and call the new music formation Scent of Sound.

We have combined the generated melodies with our own ”classical” compositions and ambient sounds to a collage of poetic soundscapes.

For this CD we have also developed a 3-D sound simulation method and we have run our computers nights long to calculate these effects.


The mathematical method used to generate some of the melodies is called Polar Plots Algorithm, and from this name we derived the ”Polar Lights” as our title.

”Lights” as this production was designed to work with AudioStrobe players.

In the title song many of the sound structures are direct transformations of color photos of northern lights into sound.



A traveler to the Polar regions into a sudden thunderstorm, his car is defect and through the magic of the night he is taken to the North.
Temple of Ice
(The Fugue 8:53)
He finds himself in a rotating cathedral of ice and snow.
Second Chance
A goddess appears and gives him two chances to get to the Polar Lights. Taking his second chance a machine arrives.
It is astonishing and frightening. The machine makes the winter coming.
The first snow flakes are falling down...
Polar Lights
He can see the northern lights. They surround him and send him on a journey, full of alchemy and inner transformation.
Forgotten Times
He finds himself and his personal history and is ready to go back home...

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