Fwd: ~e; EM observations #2
brian carroll <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sun, 27 Feb 2005 11:54:39 -0600
thank you Louis for the links...
> not quite exactly what you asked for, but close and worth a look
> in sort of descending order of relevance
> On Feb 26, 2005, at 9:08 PM, brian carroll wrote:
>> * i have been wondering if any musician has ever tried to
>> play the electrical infrastructure as a giant instrument-
>> that is, the 'strings' of high-voltage powerlines, and
>> other possible things such as turbines, generators, etc.
>> (maybe HAARP references a playing of the ionosophere).
- On a carpet of leaves illuminated by the moon (2000) for koto with
pure wave oscillator
- What Day Is Today? (1999) eight short works on tape, based on
natural radio waves and other date from the Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury,
Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn
- Q (1996), for quintet and pure wave oscillators.
- Spira Mirabilis (1994) for bass sustaining instrument and electric
- Wind Shadows (1994) for solo trombone with closely tuned pure wave
- Music for Soprano with Slow Sweep Pure Wave Oscillators (1993)
- Music for Cello with One or More Amplified Vases (1992)
- Amplifier and Reflector One (1991) for open umbrella, roasting pan,
and amplified clock
- Kettles (1987) for five timpani and two pure wave oscillators
- Intervals (1983) for chorus and sound-sensitive lights
- Music for Alpha Waves, Assorted Percussion, and Automated Coded
- Sferics (1981) sound installation and recordings of ionospheric
disturbances, for large-loop antennas, tape recorder and playback system
- Solar Sounder I (1979) sound installation powered and controlled by
sunlight. In collaboration with electronic designer John Fullemann
- Clocker (1978) for performer with galvanic skin response sensor,
audio digital delay system, amplified clock and small loudspeakers
- Ghosts (1978) for audio oscillator, loudspeakers, and performer with
- Music on a Long Thin Wire (1977) sound installation for audio
oscillator and electronic monochord // ** maybe this is e-wirev??
- World Music System (1972) for bowed string instruments
- "I am sitting in a room" (1970) for voice and electromagnetic tape
- Whistlers (1967, withdrawn) for recordings of ionospheric
disturbances and electronics
Austral Voices: New Music from Australia NA028 --
For telegraph wires, tuning forks, computer driven piano,
psaltery, whirly, cello, synthesizer and ruined piano.
Curated by Brian Conley
'"Squall" is an audio CD that is included with Cabinet issue 3. All
the tracks are related to the weather; some are raw recordings of
weather phenomena on earth and in space; others were produced by
letting weather phenomena randomly affect some means of producing
sound. The artists on the track include Joe Banks, Maria Blondeel,
Peter Cusack, M S C Harding, Allan Lamb, Shawn Korgan, Federico
Marulanda Rey, Gordon Monahan, and Chris Watson. The full list of
tracks is as follows...'
1. 1. Maria Blondeel — MOS 1994 (8:19)
MOS 1994 was made by projecting slides of moss where the luminosity of
each slide was dependent on meteorological conditions. The light from
the projector was converted into a corresponding sound using
photo-electric resistors that control sound generators. For example, a
rise in luminosity produces a rise in pitch.
// ** this could be analogous to electrical pylons and
// high-voltage cables/powerlines, in how they also hum...
3. Gordon Monahan — Long Aeolian Piano (7:49, excerpt)
For this recording, Monahan stretched 50-foot-long piano wires of
various thicknesses through an upright piano to an anchored pegboard.
All sounds heard on this recording are produced by wind-induced
vibrations on the strings, in this case 40-mile per hour winds. The
sounds are not amplified and can be heard acoustically up to 700 feet
The installation was a collaboration with Thaddeus Holownia and was
constructed on his farm in Jolicure, New Brunswick, Canada beginning in
1984. Recording engineer: Michael W. Huon. Post-production mastering:
4. Shawn Korgan — Rocky Mountain National Park (15:58)
This is a recording made on 16 February 1999, through the use of a
special receiver, of natural radio emissions that occur in the
very-low-frequency (VLF) radio spectrum of approximately 100 to 10,000
cycles-per second (0.1ï¿½10 kHz). There are three types of sounds:
crackling, chorus, and whistlers, all of which are disturbances in the
magnetic field surrounding the earth, i.e. the magnetosphere...
...Korgan made the recording between 7—8am. MDT at an elevation of
12,100 feet during a major geomagnetic storm.'
8. Federico Marulanda Rey - Signals (4:35)
Three sound sources, all of them extra-atmospheric, are used in
"Signals": data received by the radio telescope in Arecibo, Puerto
Rico; a radio signal from Pulsar B0329+54; and a recording of the
magnetosphere of Ganymede, Jupiter's largest moon.
9. Joe Banks — Theophany (3:07)
Recordings of the intense thunderstorms that swept southern England
during the autumn of 1995. As Banks states "This was a simple analogue
recording of longwave radio signals radiated by lightning strikes
during a very close electrical storm. These clustered surges were, from
the point of view of the recording equipment, infinitely loud and
arbitrarily short. All that was required from the engineers was to
suppress their instinct to protect the receiver from these brutal
signals. The sound of this track, seemed not so much a record of a
natural phenomenon. as a record of the equipment's inability to capture
it accurately. These sounds could not be less human, less similar to
Greek Orthodox composer John Tavener's composition of the same name,
where a basso-profundo voice expresses Tavener's concept of divinity."
// *** here we go... 'wire music'
10. Alan Lamb — Primal Image (15:00, excerpt)
This recording was made by using abandoned telegraph wires in the
Australian outback. Lamb placed contact microphones on the wires that
pick up not only the vibration of the wind, but also birds landing on
the wire and various bits of detritus blowing in the wind. Lamb gives
the following account of the resulting acoustic phenomena: "The natural
frequencies of the wire are determined by the integer harmonics of the
fundamental in very long wires such as telephone wires, which are also
very thick (three millimeters), the fundamental is well below one Hertz
(1 Hz). Thus only the higher harmonic frequencies fall into the
auditory range. The very high harmonics (for example 250Hz and above)
become so crowded they cease to have discrete frequencies but rather
tend to beat together, creating second-order frequencies of lower
pitch. In effect the relationships to the fundamental are lost and it
becomes more useful to consider the length of the wire as a family of
interacting segments, each with its own fundamental within the auditory
range. This leads to an understanding of the choir-like quality of wire
music in which the sound is made up of numerous 'voices,' each
competing for harmonic dominance. Dominant harmonic patterns become
established by the combination of segments into coherent'
ï¿½eigenvalue' frequencies (that is, possible frequencies under a given
set of conditions of wind and wire) which give rise to great crescendos
up to 120 decibels or more in dynamic range. Conversely, as coherence
is lost following wind shifts and tension changes (as mentioned below),
decrescendos are heard while new coherent patterns start to emerge. The
same principles are in operation to produce high-order low-frequency
beats which generate an equivalent complexity of rhythm and pulsation.
It is of great interest to me as a biological scientist that these
principles have much in common conceptually with those underlying the
generation of coherent patterns in biological systems (for example, in
the development of the body plan of the embryo and in the function of
the brain). This, one assumes, is why wire music sounds organic, and
perhaps why it resonates so deeply with one's emotional being. Similar
principles are to be found in many other natural systems, and it is
probably not too far fetched to suggest that wire music is an aural
embodiment of some of the most fundamental dynamic laws of the
© 2001 Dorobo
'Described by Time Magazine as "a cross between Carl Sagan and
Madonna", astrophysicist, author and recording artist Dr. Fiorella
Terenzi received her doctorate in physics from the University of Milan,
has studied opera and composition at Conservatory G. Verdi, Corsi
Serali, and taught mathematics and physics at Liceo Scientifico, Milan.
In research at the Computer Audio Research Laboratory, University of
California, San Diego, she developed techniques to convert radio waves
from galaxies into sound - released by Island Records on her acclaimed
CD "Music from the Galaxies".'
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