Words to Dead Lips Documentation

Words to Dead Lips – November 2010, Intermedia Arts from Pramila Vasudevan on Vimeo.

I just finished collaborating on a grant funded project titled Words to Dead Lips at Intermedia Arts last month. I did live electronic music and sound design, as well as build sound objects that the dancers used in the piece. The collaboration began with choreographer Pramila Vasudevan and visual artist Matt Wells with whom I joined to expand the project in December, 2009. Here’s more documentation including project notes, photos and press:

Words to Dead Lips on mnartists.org
Words to Dead Lips in intermediaarts.org
Closing night sound excerpt posted on AudioCookbook.org
Words to Dead Lips article on Twin Cities Daily Planet

Chromatic Textures Shown at 6X6 #5: Mystery

On Wednesday, July 7, 2010 my piece Chromatic Textures was shown at 6X6 #5: Mystery, an exhibition at Ciné Lab in Athens, Georgia. My work was accepted along with five other artists, “…including Denton Crawford’s eyeballs, Aaron Oldenburg’s plunge into asphyxia, and a performance streamed live over the Internet from California.” Here’s my abstract for Chromatic Textures.

Chromatic Textures is a study on the synesthetic nature of our senses of sound and sight. Video input is used to produce generative musical phrases. The visual media is analyzed by the GMS (Gestural Music Sequencer) to create the musical forms in real-time. The software includes adjustable probability distribution maps for the scale and rhythm. Adjusting these settings allows familiar structures to emerge. The settings chosen for this piece cause notes within a particular scale to play more frequently, however, it is still possible for any note within the twelve-tone chromatic system to occur. As a result, dissonant or blue notes can be heard at rare instances throughout the piece.
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Exploring The Sounds of Ice

This is one of the coolest (no pun intended) sound design projects ever. Marlin Ledin rode his bike and camped around the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior covering about 150 miles on the ice recording the creaks and groans of the shifting ice plates. Listen to his recordings and checkout photos and videos of his expedition at www.bikingtheapostles.com. Marlin describes the ice sounds:

The Lake Drums, as some people call them, are an amazing phenomenon that rank right up there with Aurora Borealis. Lake drums, or drumming perhaps, occurs when a shift in the ice creates friction between sheets of ice, like tectonic plates of the earths crust. The unique sounds created come after these shifts in the ice. I ventured out and captured some of these sounds with modern recording techniques.

Superheated Water – Dance of the Blobs

I love the texture of this sound – it’s infinitely sampleable, and equally uncontrollable. A thin coating of oil, rubbed into the pan – then heat it on high for 5 minutes. After a while, the water becomes so hot and isolated from the surface of the metal it superheats (boils without bubbles). This creates the beautiful dancing effect you get, similar to when mercury is loose on a solid surface.

The recording was made on a fostex FR2LE with a canon digital camera for visuals. The single hits would be cool for super fizzy percussion, don’t you think? Sampled at 24/96 on a fostex fr2le in stereo, 12 inches above the pan.


High quality download here:
Superheated oil and water – dance of the blobs

YOUTUBE link – Superheated Water & Oil – Dance of the Blobs

Generative Accident – Dripping Water

dripI have been re-reading articles on Generative music in Audio Culture : Readings in Modern Music again, and some unplanned generative music took me be suprise – dripping from my jumper.

I set up a few cardboard loo rolls to resonate with the sound and stood around for 5 minutes recording it all. There are some really interesting syncopated moments, all underpinned with a regular metronomic beat. I liked the intrusion of external sounds to the mix, as you listen on. A Happy accident


generative dripping clothes

rec@24/96 with rode nt5 and fostex fr2le, minimal eq