Synthesizers don’t have to be played with black and white keys: in recent years we’ve seen the rise of grid controllers, tablets and squishy, multi-touch surfaces for music-making. Quirky startup Playtronica is trying to make MIDI interfaces even more fun, bringing fruit, vegetables and color recognition into the mix.

We visited Playtronica’s stand at this weekend’s Sónar+D in Barcelona – the sister event to Sónar’s long-running music festival – to find out more about how its fun MIDI controllers can enable anyone to make a whole orchestra out of pineapples, turn a color palette into a rhythmic sequencer and use the human body as an instrument.

This year is Sónar’s 25th birthday, which it celebrated by sending music into space from artists like Autechre, Laurel Halo, Holly Herndon and Daedelus, who even showed us how he did it in our video feature, How to Make a Track for Extraterrestrial Contact.

Read next: 25 tracks celebrating 25 years of Sónar Festival



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