andrewcsmith on 06/03/2011 at 11:45AM
ISSUE Project Room's annual Darmstadt Institute — which borrows the name (if not polemic) of the famous incubator of post-WWII difficult music — runs throughout the month of June, with imports like John Moran & Saori, Terre Thaemlitz (aka DJ Sprinkles), and Jennifer Walshe; Darmstadt stalwarts like TILT Brass, Claire Chase & Rebekeh Heller, and the Wet Ink Ensemble; and some revivals of underrepresented American artists such as David Borden's Mother Mallard Portable Masterpiece Co. and Larry Austin. Almost all of these artists are represented in the mix directly to the right of these words, in works ranging from late-70s pieces by Mother Mallard's Portable Masterpiece Co. – one of the first-ever synthesizer ensembles, counting Robert Moog and David Tudor among its members – to an improvisation by inimitable pianist Thollem McDonas, recorded last year in the Can Factory.
We'll continue adding to this mix, as we excavate more recordings from the seemingly endless ISSUE archive, and feature tracks from artists once or twice a week. For now, though, check out the full Institute schedule and, if you're in town, check us out.
TAGGED AS:loadbang, larry polansky, john moran saori, c spencer yehchris corsanonate wooley, darmstadt 2011, See More...
andrewcsmith on 06/21/2010 at 09:00AM
Kenneth Gaburo looked at language and music and saw enough commonalities and crosstalk to render the distinction inadequate. The two categories of communication and expression are indistinguishable in their root—the voice—and so why bother with reinforcing the divergence?
The two artists added to the FMA this morning—Larry Polansky, a composer/programmer/performer/theorist, and Chris Mann, a composer/poet/performer/linguist—both took different (but clearly related) concepts from Gaburo. Polansky often works on the level of musical systems and probabilities; the example below, "Simple Actions/Rules of Compossibility," is for a performer and computer, but the person controlling the computer has very little involvement in specific events. It is rather the systems that are being controlled, so that the changes are not to the details but rather they are on a higher level. Of course, the changes manifest themselves on the lower level—this is language—and it is these changes that are heard in the recording below. I'm leaving out an absurd amount of information here, but luckily Larry's kind enough to just put many of his recordings up on his site. He also often works with harmonic series-derived tunings, gamelan, and rode the Amiga wave the first time around.
"Simple Actions/Rules of Compossibility" is presented here in a recording by Larry Polansky and Chris Mann, who reads a part of his long text Tuesday called "Rules of Compossibility." In this, the Amiga is essentially a responsive instrument to the sounds that it takes as input, so Mann's text is treated by the computer as sound. Yet, rather than just sound poetry, concerned with sound as its object (and stripping away a large degree of referential meaning from the text), Mann uses language as the "mechanism whereby you understand what I'm thinking better than I do (where I is defined by those changes for which I is required)." In other words (if it is possible to say the same thing in other words) language does not communicate; language reveals. Mann's text "notes (on the user as software)" is just one of the many hours of recordings he has available on his site. I've featured the first part here, but the whole thing works out to about a half hour.
Larry Polansky and Chris Mann will both be at ISSUE on Tuesday evening to talk about the work of Kenneth Gaburo, and to give performances, along with the composer and theorist David Dunn (who played last night). Facilitating the conversation will be the trumpeter Nate Wooley, so just for fun I've added some of his music to the playlist below.