IBM Research’s Watson program will be taking on the “DJ Watson” moniker to help festival-goers compose their own songs at Moogfest.

Plus, synth-pop band Grimes and pop trio Miike Snow have been added to the Moogfest lineup.

More than 250 artists will participate the festival, which is devoted to music, art and technology, on May 19-22 at 17 walkable venues throughout the downtown Durham. (Tickets are available online.)

Watson is the supercomputer cognitive computing initiative from IBM that not only has beaten human champions at Jeopardy! but also is now being used in a wide variety of medical research and other roles.

In addition to Grimes and Miike Snow, new performers on the bill announced Tuesday include:

  • Chicago house techno and disco DJ Black Madonna
  • English rapper, grime artist, songwriter and record producer Skepta
  • Los Angeles noise rock band Health
  • Eyes Low, a house and synth band that hails from North Carolina
  • Erika Anderson, aka EMA, who will headline one of the Durationals, a daily series of extended performances
  • Grammy Award-nominee tAz Arnold, who will lead a guided music meditation at Duke University’s Nasher Museum of Art

The festival will present several art installations as well, including Convergence, a visual workspace and interactive conversation series at Research Triangle Park. World-renowned media artist Kyle McDonald will create WiFi Whisperer, an installation that will “listen” to leaky data from festival-goers’ devices and use it to create data visualization and ambient soundscapes and melodies.

Other notable installations include:

  • The sounds from Burt’s Bees hives will be used to create a sound-art installation at the American Tobacco Campus. The Antenes will be repurposing old telephone switchboards into working modular synthesizers.
  • Lori Napoleon will be transforming Carrack Modern Art in Durham into a manual telephone exchange office, combining audio synthesis, sculpture, hacking and telephony.
  • Durham Arts Council will be featuring an exhibit of the rarest and largest collection of Buchla synthesizers will be exhibited in the foyer of the Durham Arts Council.

Moogfest’s diverse program will also include conversations, workshops, an experimental film festival and a “Modular Marketplace” for instrument manufacturers.

Previously announced headliners include electronic music pioneer Gary Numan, who will perform his first three albums over three consecutive nights in three different venues.

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