- Year of composition: 2004
- Duration: 14:25
- Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
- Commission: IMEB
Many years ago, I asked my friend Jo Hyde about a certain sound in one of his works. He told me he’d used power tools. For a second I thought he was talking about some fancy piece of software but in actual fact he just meant the sound of engineering tools such as a drill.
Since then, I have been listening to and recording noisy sounds, many of which I originally thought would be extremely difficult to use, let alone listen to. Many of my earlier pieces (especially works like Junky) rely upon stable drones so I knew that working with noisier sounds would be difficult. Power Tools draws upon sounds such as that of a lawn mower, a hedge trimmer and a recording of a steel factory from Sheffield, the town where I live and work.
Like many of my other works, Power Tools is sectional but not due to the kinds of sounds or processes used. Quite simply, there are passages which are really quite noisy and when they subside, we move towards sounds that are less prominent, less ’real life.’
Power Tools was realized in 2004 at the composer’s studio and mixed in the Studio Circé of the Institut de musique expérimentale de Bourges (IMEB) in February 2004 and premiered on June 4, 2004 at Palais Jacques-Cœur during the Synthèse Festival (Bourges, France). The piece was commissioned by the IMEB.
- June 4, 2004, Synthèse 2004: Concert, Palais Jacques-Cœur, Bourges (Cher, France)