Only 45 minutes by plane from Spotify HQ lies Helsinki, the capital of Finland, where last weekend’s Music Hack Day took place. Located just west of the city center lies StartUp Sauna, which together with Aaltoes were our hosts for the weekend.

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Here are some of our favorite hacks!

Gig voter

The winners of the Spotify prize was Viima and their hack called Gig Voter. The tool is built to help artists understand what their crowd is with an interactive voting system. The green dots on an axis represent different cities in relationship to each other, depending on how many have voted on each city.

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µstify provided an interface for overlaying a picture with the image data from an artist alá Instagram. “What if you could apply a filter to any image based on the hottest song from any artist you pick? Make the image look like the song sounds like? That is what you can do with [mu]stify.”

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Hackface & Hackscan

Hugo put together some really nifty hacks; the first one is called Hackface, which is “a Python script that gets your top 100 or 1000 most listened to bands and artists from, downloads their photos from Echo Nest, detects all their faces using OpenCV, resizes them using PIL, then finally uses ImageMagick to composite them into a single, averaged image.”


He also did Hackscan, which is “a Python script that either takes a YouTube URL for a music video, or the name of an artist. If you give an artist name, it fetches a video URL from Echo Nest. The video is split into its individual frames using ffmpeg. The frames are then slit-scanned using PIL in different ways.”


Ballmangler built a generative sound engine that based on eg proximity and physical objects created music and visuals.

Common Denominator

The author of this article also took the liberty to trying out some old max skills and started experimenting with how to delimitate the number of options when using the built in synths of Ableton Live.

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That’s it for this report. You’ll find the complete list of hacks at Hackerleague.