music

Harmonies are affects…

Harmonies are affects. Consonance and dissonance, harmonies of tone or colour, are affects of music and painting […] the artist creates blocs of percepts and affects but the compound must stand up on its own. The artist’s great difficulty is to make it stand up on its own.

Deleuze and Guattari, What is Philosophy?

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The word was a voice

In the beginning, there was the word. The word was a voice. The voice had a speaker. And the speaker knew the magic words. Fast-forward thousands of years to a time when humans behave like robots and robots behave like humans. Nobody knows the magic words anymore. Computers don’t distinguish between messages of love or hatred. Microchips make music and war with indifferent equivalence. All word, every voice, is now code. It has been for years.

A voice sonically signifies an individual. When that individual’s voice is translated into code, digitized, the voice becomes malleable. Its fixed and ephemeral properties are made durable, permanent, and loosed from time at once. It then becomes possible to perceive the digital recording in microscopic ways. Digitization makes it easy to study, and so to impersonate the voice – to replicate its signifying power.

Echo’s secret voice – scattered today to every corner of the winds – drives Pan mad. The trickster Raven steals Crow’s voice for a song. Shamans recite incantations from within cavernous passages, separating the voice from a body. The Acousmatics blindly follow Pythagoras’s enshrouded voice. The schizophrenic patient convincingly hears imaginary voices – special words for safe ears. The ventriloquist conceals her own voice, diverting attention to an avatar instead. The voice thrower untethers his voice from spatial coordinates’ confines. Renowned voices supplant an impersonator’s own. The speechwriter churns practiced words through a politician’s voice. Phonographs reproduce the voices of the long-ago dead. A Bell Labs computer sings “Daisy Bell”. Ferris Bueller’s fake coughs and sneezes echo into a high school telephone booth receiver from a digital sampler called the “Emulator”.

Would the walls of Jericho have fallen to the sound of a synthesized trumpet?

From Mad Skills: MIDI And Music Technology In The 20th Century

Jouissance on ACL’s top 20 albums of 2017

ACL 2017 ~ The Top 20 Albums of the Year

 

New: Jouissance bonus material

Jouissance [extended mix]

An extended version of Jouissance is available when you download the original album from Bandcamp.

Monad edits

Extended versions of dəʊniː mɑːɹhɑː and əʊ ɡɑːiː available to stream/download:

dəʊniː mɑːɹhɑː

əʊ ɡɑːiː

‘Music as something human’

The idea of music as something human bodies do has fallen to the margins as arts programs disappear from schools nationwide, while songs often arrive to us as tick birds riding discreetly on the backs of larger cultural phenomena—movies, video games, television, phones.

So there is something particularly profound about the idea that music could teach a newborn baby how to breathe, how to eat, how to exist. Music therapy, a growing field still in its nascence in the U.S., is one of the last remaining sanctums in the world where music serves this purpose, connecting us to the most basic human truths. Hearing your parents’ voices vibrating through the breastbone, lying on their chest and feeling the pulse of their heart—for most humans, this is the first music.

We store these sounds deep in our limbic system, our emotional brain where we register feelings and sensations. It is also where we store threats and deep terrors: If you are in a car accident, your neocortex will help you describe what happened to the cops, but your limbic system is where you keep the sound of the shrieking tires, the loud bang, and the crumpling of metal. It’s all mixed up there, along with your mother’s breath and your favorite song.

Can Music Heal Trauma? Exploring the Therapeutic Powers of Sound

Dancing music in the C20

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