selbyfilm

For a Deaf Artist, The Process of Sound Art, Transformed: Short Film

Revealing a deeper understanding of what sound means in our world, how it works as “currency” and “ghost,” Performance Artist Christine Sun Kim explores sonic media without the benefit of hearing. She finds how to make its presence more physical, to find greater dimensions of movement, and to make a personal connection beyond what most of us might find in the everyday sense. As she describes it to NOWNESS: There are social norms surrounding sound that form our speech development and our way of handling sound with care. They’re so deeply ingrained that, in a sense, our identities cannot be …

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A Handmade Children’s Book, a 7″ Vinyl Record, and Tangible, Handmade Music

In the midst of all this talk of intangible digital intellectual property and arcane licensing and Internet policy, there’s something comforting about thinking of music and art as something you make with your hands and give to someone. It was a discussion of that – even in the context of technology – that first led me to the discussion of “Handmade Music.” (Tip of the hat to my friend, Etsy’s Matt Stinchcomb, with whom this discussion has crossed the Atlantic from Brooklyn to Berlin.) Via Cool Hunting, here’s an old-fashioned way of making a music object. The music is on …

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Remixing the World: A Sampler of Sampling, via Readers

The possibilities of a microphone and the world are limitless, so as this week we looked at a recording of music made with playgrounds, a mic, and Ableton Live, readers responded in kind with a fantastic spectrum of sampling-inspired, real world-produced musical wonder. From comments, a few examples: Diego Stocco, a favorite sound designer on this site, ventures in his latest installment into a dry cleaner. Clean, wrinkle-free clothes and great music – see, you don’t actually have to choose. See top. “Vega” by CDM reader Cordovan Music (Gregory Reeves), is an eerily-lovely ambient score made from LA’s freeways – …

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evolutiondancemusic

Across Time and Space, Tracing the Evolution of Western Dance Music: Data Visualization

Even from the birds-eye view of larger genres, the interrelations and ongoing transformation of music is dynamic, complex, and inter-connected. That’s the view in The Evolution of Western Dance Music, a map of musical styles in five-year chunks across the 19th and 20th Centuries, through Africa, Europe, the Americas, and Asia. The project is the work of London/Seattle/New York Web agency Distilled, pulling genre births from Bass Culture, Last Night A DJ Saved My Life,The All Music Guide to Electronica, and Wikipedia. Having just edited a book entitled The Evolution of Electronic Dance Music, I find it extremely interesting to …

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geertrogerdavid

A New Instrument, in Practice: Eigenharp Players Build a New Musical Tradition (Videos)

A look at the keys of a new instrument, now embraced as such by a community of players. Alpha image (CC-BY) Ross Elliott. Amidst the general-purpose computing platforms (laptop, iPad), and latest iterations of the conventional synthesizer (keyboard, knobs), the quest to build something genuinely specific, self-contained, and unique drives on. These creations are strange breeds, evolutionary singularities that aim to embody something the more generic instruments of our age lack: personality and soul. They’re the kind of object you might want to practice for years, to treat in their digital, “post-mechanical” form the way you would a violin or …

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A Look at the Enduring Berlin Scene, in Latest Lovely Resident Advisor Film; Hope

In August, the Resident Advisor film on Detroit gave us a chance to reflect on that city’s cultural response to economic catastrophe. To talk about a city that has seen sweeping change and challenge, it’s difficult to beat Berlin. Resident Advisor released the third installment of this series in September, but I missed it as I was traveling … somewhere … and it’s no less relevant today, least of all on a gorgeous, sunny day in the German capital on the eve of the coming winter. The creators describe it thusly:

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Turntable Meets Cello, Sax, Laptop: How Archie Pelago Uses The Bridge and Ableton Live

With laidback, exotic grooves and richly-coordinated interlaced cello, saxophone, turntable, and electronics, Archie Pelago’s music relies on some serious technological savvy. To be sure, all you really need to play instruments and computers and turntables together is to get into a room and start jamming. But to realize their specific musical vision, the trio of Hirshi, Cosmo D and Kroba have turned to an advanced Ableton Live rig, centered around The Bridge to couple Serato and Live. Here’s a look at their music – and all the gory details that combine to make their setup tick. Grab the free EP …

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detroitfromspace

In Detroit’s Ruins, A Look at an Electronic Music Revolution, by Resident Advisor

Against Detroit’s “industrial exoskeleton,” Resident Advisor has a new documentary short film examining Detroit’s musical revival, an electronic cultural phenomenon that brought healing and new life to a city whose economic livelihood had imploded. The film is beautifully shot, and wisely starts with Motown and its connections to the auto industry, not simply with an out-of-context look at electronics alone. From those roots come the rich musicianship Detroit offers, a level of musicianship perhaps not generally associated with electronica. The film logically turns to the electronic revolution – and some reminders of just how fresh and modern the tracks sound, …

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Eye, Ear, Body Candy: The Pulsing, Geometric AV Worlds of numbercult

Sometimes, to quote Depeche Mode, words are very unnecessary. Instead, lose yourself for a few minutes in the vibrating mathemagical lands of numbercult, audiovisual immersions in which sound and geometry fuse in a strange, abstract dance. Their most recent creation, found via Richard Devine’s prolific Facebook wall and posted earlier this summer, explores an actual audiovisual sequencer. See it at top: Connected is a graphical/musical sequencer system. a three way flow of information, between graphics, sound and external triggers shape the composition. Recorded in real-time. But actual functioning interfaces aside, I’ll leave you with some other video clips that traverse …

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Led by Deru, a Wonderful Band of Artists to Head to Iceland to Make a Soundtrack, Film

A merry band of complementary filmmakers, photographers, and musicians, a curated ensemble perfectly fitted to the landscape, are heading to remote Iceland to make images and a musical soundtrack inspired by the landscape and its people. Photographers Tim Navis + Kim Høltermand and film collective Scenic are heading up the visual component, while composer and electronic producer Deru has assembled the musicians. Improvisation is intended to be a guiding force, say the creators. With the assistance of a community organized on Kickstarter, it’ll also be crowd-funded. In addition to the obligatory, pretty photo book and prints and boxed set of …

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