Melt Mathew Adkins

This work initially grew out of my daily travels to the studio in Birmingham in from my home some twenty miles away. The work also draws on Turner’s painting ‘Rain, Steam, and Speed’ (1844) and by its very subject matter makes reference to Schaeffer’s early work the Etude aux Chemins de Fer. The quality of Turner’s later work that appeals most to me is the sense that more definable objects have been painted over, hard lines dissolved. There is a sense of implication and suggestion. Melt is a poetic depiction of a train journey. The work is based on the mediation between extremes: i) smooth to pulsed motion ii) raw to processed sonic material. Melt draws upon all three levels of event-gesture: i) Raw recordings of trains, station announcements and station concourses ii) Synthetic materials which are modelled after the motion and characteristics of the raw source materials iii) Synthetic materials of a dream world. Throughout the work, sounds of the real world melt/morph into their dream-world equivalent as a traveller lapses in and out of a daydream. All of the material employed in the work is unified spectromorphologically thus allowing for a high degree of integration between the differing event-gesture levels of sonic material.

Source: 2004

  • Year of composition: 1994
  • Duration of the submitted work: 11:52
  • Production: University of Birmingham

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