Living Electronic Music by Simon Emmerson

By Simon Emmerson

Drawing on contemporary rules that discover new environments and the altering events of composition and function, Simon Emmerson offers an important contribution to the learn of latest tune, bridging historical past, aesthetics and the guidelines in the back of evolving functionality practices. even if created in a studio or played on level, how does digital tune mirror what's stay and residing? what's it to accomplish 'live' within the age of the desktop? Many performer-composers draw upon a 'library' of fabrics, a few created previously in a studio, a few coded 'on the fly', others 'plundered' from the widest attainable variety of assets. yet others refuse to desert ordinarily 'created and structured' electroacoustic paintings. mendacity in the back of this maelstrom of task is the perennial courting to 'theory', that's, principles, ideas and practices that in some way lie in the back of composers' and performers' activities. a few composers declare they only 'respond' to sound and compose 'with their ears', whereas others use types and analogies of formerly 'nonmusical' tactics. it really is obvious that during such new musical practices the human physique has a brand new courting to the sound. there's a ancient size to this, for because the earliest electroacoustic experiments in 1948 the physique has been celebrated or sublimated in an odd 'dance' of forces during which it hasn't ever really long gone away yet hardly been openly current. the connection of the physique appearing to the areas round has additionally gone through a revolution because the resource of sound creation has shifted to the loudspeaker. Emmerson considers those matters within the framework of our more and more 'acousmatic' international within which we won't see the resource of the sounds we pay attention.

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By Simon Emmerson

Drawing on contemporary rules that discover new environments and the altering events of composition and function, Simon Emmerson offers an important contribution to the learn of latest tune, bridging historical past, aesthetics and the guidelines in the back of evolving functionality practices. even if created in a studio or played on level, how does digital tune mirror what's stay and residing? what's it to accomplish 'live' within the age of the desktop? Many performer-composers draw upon a 'library' of fabrics, a few created previously in a studio, a few coded 'on the fly', others 'plundered' from the widest attainable variety of assets. yet others refuse to desert ordinarily 'created and structured' electroacoustic paintings. mendacity in the back of this maelstrom of task is the perennial courting to 'theory', that's, principles, ideas and practices that in some way lie in the back of composers' and performers' activities. a few composers declare they only 'respond' to sound and compose 'with their ears', whereas others use types and analogies of formerly 'nonmusical' tactics. it really is obvious that during such new musical practices the human physique has a brand new courting to the sound. there's a ancient size to this, for because the earliest electroacoustic experiments in 1948 the physique has been celebrated or sublimated in an odd 'dance' of forces during which it hasn't ever really long gone away yet hardly been openly current. the connection of the physique appearing to the areas round has additionally gone through a revolution because the resource of sound creation has shifted to the loudspeaker. Emmerson considers those matters within the framework of our more and more 'acousmatic' international within which we won't see the resource of the sounds we pay attention.

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If we cannot distinguish between a machine-generated and a human-generated soundstream then how do we respond? And does it matter? Below (in the next section) I will discuss Christopher 67 There is great subtlety in Turing’s ‘Imitation Game’ which is simplified in this remark. See Turing (1950). 68 Recent explosions in the use of ‘emoticons’ in text messaging and email suggest it is omitted simply to be replaced by misunderstanding – we make our own interpretation of the tone of the sender’s ‘voice’.

22 We have two strands of thought evolving here – both with a degree of reference to the greater sound environment. One captures and works with material which possesses recognizable source/cause reference, the other creates and develops nonreferential23 sound in ways that relate more or less directly to real world behaviour 20 As, for Cage, there is to be no judgement of their suitability. 21 Original entirely in capitals. Variations VI (1966) is subtitled ‘for a plurality of soundsystems (any sources, components and loud-speakers)’.

51 So broadly this negative set will reveal just as wide a range of possibilities – from patterned to random. Organic, biological, physical and social systems metaphors play an important role in the new soundscapes of music. 52 Such interactions are a powerful generator of musical ideas – as in any grand narrative: how do the actors in a Greek tragedy confront their ‘inevitable’ fate? In Chapter 2 we shall return to a radical reinterpretation of the ‘non-human’ (or at least non-sentient) side of this metaphor which attempts to deny the very separation (‘choice/no-choice’) I have suggested.

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