L’ivresse de la vitesse 2

Intoxicated by Speed 2
IMED 0318
2003

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Radio // L’ivresse de la vitesse 2
L’ivresse de la vitesse 2
Beyond the Walls of Jericho (1991-92), 16m25s [excerpt]
CD: empreintes DIGITALes (2003) IMED 0318
  • piste@imed_0318-1
    • 1
      Beyond the Walls of Jericho (1991-92), 16m25s
      • Premiere: February 5, 1992, Clair de terre 3 — Concert 3 «Musique excessive» — ACREQ, Planétarium de Montréal (Montréal, Québec)

      In part three of the Walls Cycle, Beyond the Walls of Jericho, the discourses of social theory and personal history that informed the first and second movements of music are perceived to be futile. This abandonment of history and time in the final movement acts as a metaphor for our present and future culture in which hyper-speed and violence make everything, including history, simultaneously present. In other words the acceleration of our culture in terms of images and ideas creates a point at which everything seems to be happening at once and the maintenance of a linear historical perspective, with its revolutionary eruptions, is no longer meaningful.

      This simultaneity is musically alluded to several times in the composition by the use of several hundred solos occurring at once. Each solo has its own narrative and history but when all of them are combined together such narrative structures dissolve into one large sound field, often without clear beginning or ending. This breakdown of a linear time perspective and the resulting loss of our musical and social subjectivity creates a feeling of absence and a perception of stasis. However one virtue of this constantly temporary and mobile state is that it allows for the remapping of experience and existence or, in other words, allows us to reinvent ourselves.

      In this manner my final thoughts on the revolutionary potential of music is that it lies in the æsthetic moment of perception. It is at that moment of æsthetic perception in which our day-to-day realities dissolve and there is a suspension of linear time that the possibility of new thought or feeling, revolutionary or otherwise, can begin.

      Beyond the Walls of Jericho was produced in the composer’s studio in 1991 and 1992. It was premiered at the Association pour la recherche et la création électroacoustiques du Québec (ACREQ) Clair de terre concert series at the Planétarium de Montréal on February 5th, 1992.

      New recordings of the drum parts (performed by Philippe Keyser) were made for the remastering process. This work was reprocessed, remixed and remastered in the composer’s studio in 2001-02.

      piste@imed_0318-1.1 oeuvre@13905 ISRC CAD500316770
    • 2
      clarinet, and tape
      • Commission: François Houle, with support from the CCA
      • Premiere: November 7, 1993, François Houle (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada)

      Part of the Resonance Cycle plays with the notion of intimacy in music. Like all my music the tape portion is recorded with close-miking techniques which is intended to produce a fateful intimacy with the sound sources. In this case the soloist is often surrounded with their own sound creating a dissolving of the singular with ‘the other,’ which is in fact the performer reflected back in a narcissistic fashion.

      Beyond these elements, the Resonance Cycle also uses voice, which is perhaps the most intimate and seductive sound of all because it represents the body covered with appearances, illusions, traps, animal parodies and sacrificial simulations. However, like in all my music, these elements are multitracked to create a situation of excess and perhaps to leave us sweating in our bed of memories.

      As for the philosophical and æsthetic intentions of the hand percussion parts it is well known to any consumer of media music that in order to be considered artistic you have to have an African percussionist. Like the other elements in my music, the African percussionist turns into a dense tribe of sounds, implying some form of primitive seduction or perhaps a post-modern revenge.

      In a Bed Where the Moon Was Sweating. Resonance #1 was recorded and produced in the composer’s studio; the live clarinet part was recorded by François Houle in December 1993. It was commissioned by François Houle with assistance from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). The work was premiered by François Houle on November 7th, 1993 at a Vancouver New Music Society concert. This work was reprocessed, remixed and remastered in the composer’s studio in 2001-02.

      piste@imed_0318-1.2 oeuvre@13906 ISRC CAD500316780
    • 3
      electric guitar, and tape
      • Commission: Tim Brady, with support from the CCA
      • Premiere: May 1, 1991, Tim Brady • Music Gallery (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

      All great systems of production and interpretation, including musical discourses, increasingly appear as a large futile body. A universe that can no longer be interpreted in terms of psychological relations, or in structures or oppositions, must be interpreted in the terms of play, challenges, duels, and the strategy of appearances — that is in terms of seduction. Moreover seduction threatens all orthodoxies with their collapse as it is a black magic for the deviation of all truths.

      I can no longer discuss my music in terms of structures and narrative unfolding (ie Below the Walls of Jericho, In the Natural Doorway I Crouch, Caught in an Octagon of Unaccustomed Light and The Melting Voice Through Mazes Running [these are recorded on the compact disc The Threshold of Deafening Silence, Tronia Disc, TRD 0190]). These stories and ideas was only intended for those whose imagination were so weakened by the virtual reality of the mediascape that they needed a visual analog or a story for the music. The music always began where words ended, and the best that I can hope for is that I have provided the physics, or the interaction of motion and energy, for your own seduction.

      Physics of Seduction. Invocation #1 was recorded and produced in the composer’s studio in 1991; the recorded electric guitar part was performed by Paul Dolden in June 1993. It was commissioned by guitarist Tim Brady with assistance from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). The work was premiered by Tim Brady on May 1st, 1991 at the Music Gallery in Toronto (Canada). Physics of Seduction. Invocation #1 was performed by Tim Brady for the 1992 compact disc Imaginary Guitars on the Justin Time Records label (JTR 8440-2). This work was reprocessed, remixed and remastered in the composer’s studio in 2001-02.

      piste@imed_0318-1.3 oeuvre@13907 ISRC CAD500316790
    • 4
      Veils (1984-85), 28m37s
      • Premiere: August 19, 1985, International Computer Music Conference (ICMC) (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada)

      Veils, subtitled Studies in Textural Transformations, is a series of textures or walls of sound which act as an invitation for the listener to explore an environment where new acoustic sensations and associations can be discovered. The texture, a sustained chord of usually 14-56 notes, is constantly transforming by changing the instrument type that is articulating the sound (ie from strings to voice, to brass, to piano, to marimba, to glass, etc). No electronic effects were used and only straight recordings and mixing of acoustic instruments were used. However, the sound source or instrument type at any moment is not usually obvious to the listener, hence the sound sources are ‘veiled.’ This veiled sound is created by three main factors: the extensive multitracking (from 180 to 280 tracks of the same instrument are used at any one moment), the tuning of the chords (microtonal intervals which do not occur in our normal 12-Tone Equal Tempered Tuning System), and the recording method of close miking in a dead acoustical space which brings out aspects of each instrument type that we normally do not hear. The title also aludes to a real veil where one can switch between seeing individual strands and viewing the overall pattern. In Veils it is imagined that the listener can freely drift from one type of perception to another (ie micro to macro level or individual layer to mass effect).

      The recording stages of Veils were realized in the composer’s studio and the premixing and final mastering took place in the Sonic Research Studio of Simon Fraser University (SFU) (Vancouver, BC). The piece premiered on August 19th, 1985 at the International Computer Music Conference (ICMC ’85) in Vancouver (BC). The work won 1st prize in the Electroacoustic category of the Bourges International Electroacoustic Music Competition (Bourges, France, 1986); 1st Prize of the Luigi Russolo International Competition (Varese, Italy, 1986); and it was awarded a 1992 Euphonie d’or “as one of the twenty most significant works from two decades of the Bourges Awards.” This work was reprocessed, remixed and remastered in the composer’s studio in 2001-02.

      piste@imed_0318-1.4 oeuvre@13908 ISRC CAD500320010