Who Would Win In A Fight, Robot [Lemmy] Or Robot God?


So this is what happens when a fan of The Rock-afire Explosion grows up. Meet Compressorhead, a musical trio of hydraulic and pneumatic musical mastery.

Compressorhead is a lean band, consisting of only three members. Stickboy, the drummer, is a four-armed beast reminiscent of [General Grievous] that plays a 14-piece Pearl kit with a double bass. His listed influences include [Danny Carey] and the original MPC60.

Fingers is the guitarist and a wonder of mechanical linkages consisting of 78 hydraulically actuated fingers. Influences include [Yngwie Malmsteen], but with more fingers and less of an ego, we expect Fingers to be an even better guitarist than his idol.

Bringing in the low-end is Bones, the robotic tread-mounted bassist for Compressorhead. Like Fingers, he plays an unmodified instrument. He’s also the newest member of the band, completed in 2012.

If you’d like to check out Compressorhead in person, they seem to be touring Australia right now. If you’d like to schedule them, their rider lists a requirement of 65 Amp, 3 phase power, 3 liters each of hydraulic fluid and motor oil, and suspiciously no requirement for removing all the brown M&Ms from a package. Be sure to check out the videos of the band in action on their media site.

Thanks [BadWolf] for sending this one in.

52 thoughts on “Who Would Win In A Fight, Robot [Lemmy] Or Robot God?

  1. I, for one, welcome our new robot rock gods. although my favorite parts are actually those least related to actually playing the instruments, like the drummer headbanging as he plays, and his scary little robo-homonculus (robonculus?) working the hi-hat. making a robot musician is impressive, making three robot musicians, with some character, is substantially moreso.

    1. I think that might be too easy.

      Not to disrespect the talent required to play Dragonforce, but something with harmonics would probably be a bigger challenge for the robots. Something like the intro to Sweet Child O Mine, or the intro riff to Smashing Pumpkin’s Zero.

      /Seriously. Zero uses harmonics at the second fret. wtf.

    1. i agree also, same with the main guitarist.
      The problem with his many fingers is there is little left that actually looks like arms. You cant see how cool the strumming or pressing on the strings is when it is covered up by a ton of actuators.

    2. Bassists are generally more reserved than lead guitar players, but I do hope that this one has some Gene Simmons antics in store ;-) Maybe a flame thrower in that tank tread platform?

    3. I’d vote for a Gauntlet or Gauntlet II arcade machine for the lead singer, but unfortunately he has a very limited vocabulary that’s a little better suited for rapping than actual singing.

      Alternatively, since they’re a metal band (literally AND figuratively!), you COULD try for a Sinistar arcade machine — about the only voice clip you’d really need would be his roar! :)

    1. I’m thinking something like an angle grinder, modulated through a few tubes and valves.

      Experiments with lifelike physical voice reproduction have been done before. More recently, they mathematically model a physical set of tubes and chambers, and insert a virtual “mic” in to pick up the simulated air pressure at the point they want the “sound” to originate from.

      Prior to that, stuff has been done with analogue circuitry doing similar simulation of fleshy vocal components. And then back even further than that, heavy-duty pneumatics! I don’t think the pneumatics were heavy-duty on purpose, just the only way they COULD do them back then! And if your singer already happens to sound like an explosion in a hammer factory, metal just might be your genre.

      With very-fast air valves, and a series of tuned horns, you could quite possibly knock up a mechanical vocoder, or at least the playback part.

  2. Right now somewhere, there’s a teenage robot with a poster of these guys on the inside of his storage box. He’s probably also yelling at his creator that he doesn’t understand him and he hates him and he’s going to leave the research lab and never come back and then the creator will be sorry.

  3. This is the wildest thing ever! It would be nice if the sound on the clips was better. I know that metal music is supposed to sound like a thrash of sound, but I’d love to be able to discern the notes by “fingers” a little better so I could really appreciate all that went into the control. Same with “bones.”

    1. I think it might help to connect the guitar’s outputs up to a mixing desk directly, so as little drum as possible leaks into the mix through any other sources. Or just make the drums WAY quieter!

      I realise getting a pneumatic drumkit robot to play Motörhead, but *quietly*, may be a fool’s errand.

    1. OK my new eyeglass are supposed to be in next week. I went yo youtube th get the URL, I noted who I thought to be plying a keyboard is Junior on the hat. I’m often told to give up thinking “)

  4. 1) bolt em into the back of a pickup truck and dress em with a pumpkinhead and blood

    2) have em play scary metal/deathmetal/murdermetal/halloweenmetal

    3) mount videocam inside robot’s pumpkin and make eyes light up brighter when people around

    4) drive around at halloween and watch 100’s of kids piss themselves XDXDXD

    5) upload video of people “running for the hills” mmuhahahahahahaha

  5. Sounds VERY mechanical (and not in a good way).

    Of course it could just be the craptastic musical “piece” they’re playing.

    It would be interesting for them to play something truly musical and hear what that sounds like.

    1. Wow. Way to be an ignorant prick. You know what separates that piece from classical music?

      Absolutely nothing. They follow the same rules of music. Just because YOU have a preference doesn’t mean it’s better than anyone else’s. Especially if you’re an ass about it.

      1. “You know what separates that piece from classical music?”

        Talent? Composition? Musical Skill? More then 4 chords? A dynamic range greater then Loud-VeryLoud? Standing up to Centuries of time? Any of those ring a bell?

        The robot musicians are great builds – I would just like to hear them play something that resembles music.

  6. This has a distinctly William Gibson feel. Ever read Idaru? It’s about (among other things) an entirely synthetic pop star, with a holographic body and synthesized voice, both based on focus group data. It’s sort of the endgame of modern pop. Point is that being real really isn’t a contributing factor to people’s enjoyment. A phrase that’s recently entered my lexicon that I have trouble not using daily is “post-factual society.”

  7. So this is where Johnny Five goes after work.
    How about Don’t Ask Software: SAM for vocals? Although that might be too retro for that kinda music. Just wanted to throw it in…

  8. just thinking, if robots were to make music…..robots don’t need food, nor house, nor anyhing to live, just the instruments and a wall plug………would they charge for their music?

    1. Probably. While they don’t require food or sleep, they DO require occasional maintenance — oiling, occasional replacement parts, et cetera. :p

      Possibly also money to pay the electric bill for the house where they reside when they’re not on tour. :)

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