Sam Pettigrew – double bass
Rishin Singh – trombone
Jon Watts – handheld recorder
Recorded at Now Series #6 18/08/2012, Glebe Church, Sydney Australia, (33:00)
‘Truth, Exercise for a Listener’ is a catalogue of options for a (musical) performer. In four parts each focusing on a different facet of our faculty to listen, it offers open ended material for the performer to deal with; sounding actions, silent actions, still actions, moving actions, changing actions, interpretative actions. All can be selected, combined, omitted or extended at will. Multiple exercises can happen simultaneously.
In a broad sense the piece is an attempt to create a performance situation that instigates shifts within the sound space we inhabit. Accordingly, it highlights listening as a process of (changing) perspective and forces such shifts with all listeners involved. Performers are instructed to actively engage with and -somehow methodically- excite, measure, interpret and derive cues from the acoustics and ambience of the different sections of a performance site. A second part of the catalogue prescribes ways of coordinating one’s own playing following a possible second performer -regarded as part of the ambience of the site-. A third to listen inwards, memorise the course of one’s own actions and progress following a set of crude algorithms. The fourth part could be considered a tuning exercise where, in the case of multiple performers, these are instructed to gradually move towards a unison coming from arbitrary points.
A public performance of the exercise can not be announced beforehand and when being recorded, this can only happen with a handheld device. The engineer in this case is regarded a performer, equally inquisitive and documenting the space(s) that he/she moves through.
|Matt Hannafin – Cradle Tones
On January 1, 2009, my son, Malcolm, was born. He was a wonderful baby, funny and smart, but also colicky and deeply averse to sleep. Week by week, my wife and I watched vital aspects of our lives fade away in the face of a single overriding need: get the boy to sleep, so that we could too. This is not the ideal environment for a percussionist, which is what I normally am. After several months of complete inactivity, I hit upon an idea: electronics. I quickly put together a small arrangement of samplers, synths, and contact mics and began manipulating dials in the dead of night, listening through one earpiece and leaving the other off so I could hear when the baby cried. This experiment lasted approximately two years and yielded some 300 recorded pieces, of which three are presented here. Whether due to sleep deprivation or native attraction (ratified by a long-ago stint as a student of La Monte Young), all three are long-form, drone-based works. If you find yourself dozing off while listening, I won’t be too offended. After all, that was kind of the point.(tt: 59:59)
|Lawrence Williams – Construction for any instrument(s)
Construction for Clarinet
This text score is influenced by the work of several improvising musicians with whom I have had the opportunity to play with and learn from. The dialogue with and research into the instrument as object has lead me to reflect on the concrete relation of musician and instrument, on how movement and sound production are related and entwined, and on how the organisation of sound (composition) is intrinsically linked to action.
The audio is the first realisation for clarinet solo, recorded in 2011 at the time of writing. It is made up of four movements or parts (1, 2, 2′, 3) relating to different stages of the piece.
Construction proposes to the performer to engage in a physical analysis of the instrument through deconstruction and its reconstitution during and parallel to a musical activity. For many musicians the construction of the instrument is essentially a daily activity before playing. This ritual or chore is in this case interceded by “playing”. By the time the instrument is constructed, the piece is over – or not; the score is divided by parentheses, one of the intentions could be to suggest only possible courses of action or situations.
As the score tries to interrogate the relation of musician and instrument, this is the first of a series of realisations to be made available on Compost and Height, each made by a different musician with a different instrumental discipline.