density 21.5

december 12, 2002.

I love hanging around conservatories, specially the older ones where the many, many rooms in which people take their lessons or rehearse, are far from being shut off in a 'soundproof' fashion. I like to wander through the corridors, listen to the pupils struggling with instruments and scores, and, most of all, hear the surprising and often - to my ears - near magic results of the random mingling of all of their - unintentionally so - joint efforts.

And of course I am the proud owner of quite a collecion of recordings of out-of-tune-and-time performing amateur orchestras, individuals, duos, trios, quartets and so forth.

It is, by the way, a fascination that I share with several others.
Also, it is definitely more than just a gimmick ...
[ mental note: Expand on this -- later. ]
(Remember the Portsmouth Sinfonia, founded by Gavin Bryars, and conducted by Brian Eno?)

The other day I attended a concert by flute students, from very first beginners (like my son) to the more mature and advanced, at the Vincennes conservatory. It was wonderful. First of course because of the genuine efforts made by all involved. Second because of the continuing and resounding piano classes below and the percussionists' rehearsal above. Third because, to my pleasure and surprise, after long stretches of Mozart, Monteverdi, Telemann and Vivaldi, one of the students - admittedly she was an adult - had the courage to have a go at Edgar Varèse's Density 21.5 ...

[ Density 21.5 on CD; 21.5 (grammes per cubic centimetre), in fact, is the density of platinum ... ]

39 + 1 = 40, or more

november 30, 2002.

All the Sound Chronicles at are were filed under 'Experimental/Post Rock', which without a shadow of a doubt is the correct genre.
[ ... I know that many wonder about that 'choice', and do not agree. ]

But of course it pleases me a lot to see different tracks found their way to quite a number of stations that are were dedicated to quite different 'musical genres' ... just to give some exemples:

Those who have had an artist page at will know that, though one's tracks can be included in the playlist of any number of stations, only the 40 'most popular' ones are were listed on the Stations Now Playing-page.
Today the number of stations playing Sound Chronicles jumped from 39 to precisely 40 - or, as I can no longer know for sure, I should say: at least 40... the newest and fortieth being Slick's Mix (featuring RienDeRien), a station run by none less than Slick Ant Da Illfiguh, and playing "hot hip-hop and soul; past, present, and next!" ...

exhibit #4

november 24, 2002.

I added a new 'found tape montage' - assembled it yesterday afternoon - to my [next word is for Dutch readers only: 'TenHoorStelling'] Found Tapes, the evolving exhibition of cast away sounds...

Exhibit #4 contains parts from five findings of thrown away cassette tape, picked up between september 29 and october 11.

The first fragment, in pretty bad condition quality-wise, was found shortly before midnight on september 29, in de Derde Oosterparkstraat in Amsterdam. It was firmly twisted around the twigs of some small plant growing between a wall and one of them gray metal cases used for connecting and deconnecting the cable. Wasn't easy to get it. And it's really a small bit, so not easy to identify the origin of the screamin' electric guitars that are on it, I guess ...
Then there are two tapes found on october 9th in Bobigny. I spotted them from inside the tramway, actually, and decided to pick them up on my way back, a couple of hours later. And, yeah, god bless: they were still there!
Found the fourth one also in Bobigny, the next day.
Fifth and last one was picked up in Les Mureaux the day after thát.

Any help identifying the musics (artists, songs ...) - as always - is greatly appreciated.
Most of the music on the 22 tape finds used in the four montages in Found Tapes for the moment remains unidentified.

They're Unidentified Sounding Objects.
That is what they are ...

[ note added march 19, 2005: the second of the finds that make up exhibit #4 (nr. 19) was identified by Gérard Lanvin - in an email dated Mars 17 2005 - as a fragment of a remix of the track "Section" by The Roots, which appeared as part of a compilation called 'Hip Hop Soul Party III' ... (the original track is from the 1996 album Illadelph Halflife) ]

[ Next related entry: Finders Keepers; earlier related entry: what fascinates me ]

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