Tuesday Lab Experiment

This is a composition using only sounds from the Doepfer Modular system. Early electronic music appropriated lab equipment designed for physics and psychology experiments and turned it toward artistic ends. Over the years, the essential tools for analog electronic synthesis have largely remained the same: there are sources, and there are processors. What has changed is the tools have gotten smaller and more affordable, so that more musicians than ever can build complex electronic instruments from reconfigurable modules.

A piece in three movements, “Tuesday Lab Experiments” represents my exploration of some of the sonic possibilities of analog modular synthesis. In each one of the three movements, entitled Spectral Glow, Dance, and Storm, I navigate the sounds of the Doepfer modular system. Read on

Mine Cart

This has been the most ambitious project I’ve undertaken in this genre; I’ve used the software at my disposal more during this assignment than ever before. All of the effects and techniques that I hear below, I discovered while composing. I feel like I’ve learned a great deal about the possibilities of some of the software I own, but I know that there’s going to plenty more assignments to follow and stretch my knowledge further.

I spent most of the composition process building the individual sound objects — I made about twenty, and I had a difficult time piecing them together into a single composition. Read on

hKsszt

The source material for this assignment was any spoken passage (I recorded a short excerpt from “I Get a Hit“), from which only the unvoiced consonants were allowed. The only processing allowed for this project was cut, copy, paste, and changing the amplitude. With these processes, a somewhat surprising variety of effects are possible.

At first, I experimented mostly with pasting whole consonant sounds, and ordering them to make rhythmic motives. However, I quickly realized that, by taking a very small section of any given sound and pasting it repeatedly, it would make a buzzing tone with a perceptible pitch. Read on

Improvisation/∆Spaces

Improvisation/∆Spaces is an comprovisational performance piece in three movements for laptop quartet and fixed media, composed by the CPU Quartet.

From our very first rehearsal we began with the idea of using the fixed media to simulate an acoustic space which we could inhabit as instruments. Discussion was had of experimenting with creating a network of signal paths between our laptops and the venue computer, possibly running convolution reverb in order to spatialize our point source instrumental sounds throughout the performance space. We considered taking primitive impulse responses of particularly reverberant spaces around Montreal to facilitate this. A simple narrative form was suggested where a spatio-morphological shift would take place transporting the performance from this indoor reverberant space to an open outdoor space. Read on