[Timbre A-Z] is an interesting experiment that abstract animator Mirai Mizue set for himself in 2011. Following up his previous pieces: "Jam" (2009), "Metropolis" (2009), and "Modern" (2010), Mizue reverses the direction he had been taking and instead of creating an extremely intricate piece like all of the previous works mentioned, he takes a far more simple approach. Every one of these 30 second animations are set to a different timbre and rhythm than the last. Timbre or 音色/oniro conveniently translates to "The color of music", making this all the more appropriate of an undertaking. Each animation is categorized to one of the 26
roman letters, though that is little more than a mechanism for its release.
The mission with art pieces of this nature is to visualize music and sound. If this is the lone criteria, Mizue has succeeded in his pursuit with this series. Each new sound sees a burst of movement and color as the instruments splash onto the white background (apart from X). Shifting images move, grow, shrink, reshape, and interact with each other in ways that excite and stimulate.
This experiment by Mizue to relay sound and music in to art has consistently been a very compelling tale throughout the history of animation.
Harking back to the experimentation by the undisputed master Norman McLaren (Spheres/Blinkity Blank) as well as "Street Musique" (dir. Ryan Larkin), this lively project is an absolute joy to see in motion. Although this series doesn't quite live up to the overall genius of McLaren's pieces, nor is it of the same technical difficulty and historical importance of say Walter Ruttmann's "Opus I-IV" (1921-1925) experiments nearly 100 years ago, this still proves to be a beautifully enjoyable short series.
I will be using MAL's ranking system for this rather than my own:
Rating: 6 (Fair)
Additional Recommendation: Wonder (2014), the follow up to [Timbre A-Z] and a more advanced application of the experiment taken here.