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Morphogenèse Track Listing Detail

Catabolisms

Erik Nyström

  • Year of composition: 2011-12
  • Duration: 12:15
  • Instrumentation: 8-track fixed medium

Variants of this Track

  • 2.0 • PCM • 44 kHz • 16 bits

“[…] all sorts of agents and events that act in an unpredictable, disorderly fashion and have in common the fact that they all grind things into pieces.”

Rudolf Arnheim, Entropy and Art (1971)

The title alludes to phases where sound is undergoing a process of molecular milling, fragmenting into its most primitive constituents, not unlike the ‘catabolic processes’ Rudolf Arnheim described in his essay Entropy and Art. Arnheim argued that all aesthetic or functional objects are results of the opposing ‘anabolic tendency’ — a universal force of shape-building, instilling in all objects a structural theme.

In Catabolisms, an anabolic tendency is found also in destructive forces, as implosions and corrosions become aesthetic phenomena in their own right. Energy dissipating among these textures builds a momentum which breeds new formations in a continual morphogenesis. Thus the work shapes its own destiny, as lumpy, powdery, sticky, porous aggregations of particles are strung up into spectral clouds, strata, and cascades in an interaction among turbulent forces. As in our physical world, crises occur where creation and decay are in synergy; entropic byproducts become a fertile terrain for a self-propagating universe of sound.

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Catabolisms was realized in 2011-12 in the Electroacoustic Studio of City University London (England, UK) and premiered on April 17, 2012 during the SuperCollider Symposium 2012 at City University London.


Premiere

  • April 17, 2012, SuperCollider Symposium 2012: Electroacoustic Concert, Performance Space — College Building — City University London, London (England, UK)

Latitudes

Erik Nyström

  • Year of composition: 2011
  • Duration: 13:45
  • Instrumentation: 8-track fixed medium

Variants of this Track

  • 2.0 • PCM • 44 kHz • 16 bits

The drone established in the opening of Latitudes contains the basic sonic genome of the work, from which both vertical and horizontal spatial dimensions expand through continuous growth and transformation among textural masses. The magnitudes of the emerging world suggest spatial expansion on a scale beyond the reality inhabited and perceived by human beings; perhaps as if cosmic histories and transformations were compressed into the brief timeframe of a musical work, allowing space and matter to be experienced in pure manifestations.

The title alludes to a sense of infinite scope which one might have when experiencing the work. More literally, it is a reference to the topography of textural motion in space — for example, the stretching of perspectives lengthways and sideways (longitude and latitude), and the altitudes and depths of vertical (spectral) space.

[vi-14]


Latitudes was realized in 2011 in the Electroacoustic Studio of City University London (England, UK) and premiered on May 12, 2011 in the concert Éphémère 8 at Studio Loos in The Hague (The Netherlands).


Premiere

  • May 12, 2011, Éphémère 8, Studio Loos, The Hague (Netherlands)

Lucent Voids

Erik Nyström

  • Year of composition: 2012
  • Duration: 20:45
  • Instrumentation: 8-track fixed medium

Variants of this Track

  • 2.0 • PCM • 44 kHz • 16 bits

In Lucent Voids we are transported through a reality where the permanence and linearity of space, as we normally perceive it, is subverted and the terrain keeps warping as the journey progresses. Our own physical presence is seemingly distorted to negotiate unlikely combinations of the microscopic and the macroscopic, interiority and exteriority, the temporal and the non-temporal. The experience of the present is elastic, as time acquires a spatial dimension when we feel the future approaching, or ourselves projecting towards it, and the past accumulating into a complex topography. Orbiting the void, a counterpoint of textures outline peripheries, contrasts and foci, in the spectral coloration of a visual world which is alien in essence, although we encounter strange vestiges of the familiar, and face the suspect reflections of humanity.

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Lucent Voids was realized in 2012 in the Electroacoustic Studio of City University London (England, UK) and premiered on October 16, 2012 during the concert Alchemy & Transmutation of Sonic Matter at City University London.


Premiere

  • October 16, 2012, Alchemy & Transmutation of Sonic Matter, Performance Space — College Building — City University London, London (England, UK)

Cataract

Erik Nyström

  • Year of composition: 2010
  • Duration: 13:33
  • Instrumentation: 8-track fixed medium

Variants of this Track

  • 2.0 • PCM • 44 kHz • 16 bits

Together with the sustained, harmonic and inharmonic gestures, which trace this work throughout, ‘cataracts’ form a structural thread in the form of deluges of sound particles, washes of noise, and glissandi, where spectral motion often coincides with textural mutation in a form of ‘transformotion.’ Thus a spectral spine runs through the transforming sound environments of the work. An analogy of cataract as a medical eye condition (a clouding of the lens of the eye) can also be found in the way that our sense of spatial sonic definition is affected by degrees of textural opacity — the ‘acousmatic cataract’ being a continuum where clarity in microsound articulation intersects with clouds of noise and coagulated matter, blurring our auditory vision. Cataract may also allude to Pythagoras’s curtain in the etymology of the acousmatic: somehow the veil seems backgrounded as we move further away from the anecdotal world towards a more abstractly visual sound universe.

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Cataract was realized in 2010 in the Electroacoustic Studio of City University London (England, UK) and premiered on November 02, 2010 during the concert Exploring the Acousmatic Fabric of Space at City University London.


Premiere

  • November 2, 2010, Exploring the Acousmatic Fabric of Space, Performance Space — College Building — City University London, London (England, UK)

Far-from-equilibrium

Erik Nyström

  • Year of composition: 2008
  • Duration: 12:45
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium

Variants of this Track

  • 2.0 • PCM • 44 kHz • 16 bits

“[…] matter at equilibrium is ‘blind,’ but far from equilibrium it begins to ‘see.’ New processes set in and increase the production of entropy.”

Ilya Prigogine, The End of Certainty: Time, Chaos and the New Laws of Nature (1997)

The idea that chaotic, non-equilibrium processes and the irreversible arrow of time are fundamental creative principles of nature is here taken as a point of departure towards an aesthetic that draws attention to self-propagating phenomena in music. This is manifest in an approach to form that emphasises fluctuations and processes of growth and change, where time enables the production of possibilities and novel organisation of sound.

The entropic dynamics of sound create states of instability where textural processes can bifurcate and take a multitude of directions. Phenomenologically, we might experience this in the emergence of monolithic gestures, vast spaces, and bustling ‘cacophonies’ of mutated sound entities. They all thrive in a universe far from equilibrium, in moments where intense energy dissipates into a transformational chaos.

[iv-14]


Far-from-equilibrium was realized in 2008 at the composer’s studio in London (UK) and premiered on February 19, 2009 in the Electroacoustic Concert Series at City University London (England, UK).


Premiere

  • February 19, 2009, Electroacoustic Concert Series, Performance Space — College Building — City University London, London (England, UK)