I hold a passionate reverence for the violin as an evolved cultural archetype; in its depth, virtuosity and long history of obsession and genius lies a potency to project advanced humanized states. My work in general seeks to sublimate this heritage and re-apply it to an open futurist manifesto.
As a metaphor for the uneasy initiation of deep human-machine coupling my piece locates a violin in a symbolic landscape with an imagined advanced artificial intelligence. As they interact, each extends and probes the other as an enigma, seeking synergies, lines of cognitive parity and fleeting moments of synchrony. Unforeseen structures and momentarily visceral encounters punctuate the audio field and the twelve equally spaced divisions of the occidental octave are shaken to the floor, revealing a luminous continuum of strange and emotional tonal manifolds.
Concepts of meter and pulse are evolved at highly accelerated rates, assuming new identities as the emergent properties of complex dynamical systems. As an intelligent entity in its own right the new music consciously stands outside of itself, compressing its own entire duration into a half-second file that it includes in the composition.
This work anticipates the lucid and incognizable process of the unfolding human transcension of physical constraints. It asks the question ‘At what point would we be prepared to consider a machine conscious, and when everything, including genes, neurons and memory is abstracted as information patterns who will tell the difference?’
This piece is the first in a new line of musical thinking for me. About six months ago I started working on a self contained performance environment in MaxMSP based loosely on the principles of free improvisation, chaotic systems and just intonation. Apart from my violin all instruments in this work are software, ‘played’ by an algorithm that models the beautiful emergent patterns of shoaling fish. The vocal clusters are created from another software component I wrote, taking as its inspiration Harry Partch’s 17-Limit tonality diamond.
I plan to go deeper into more closely integrating these areas in the coming months, including a sotware realisation of my idea of ‘gravitational harmony’ (a kind of hyper-modulation system for navigating exotic relationsips between tonality systems of arbitrary complexity), swarm music, and the development a narrow artificial intelligence software layer that characterizes, applies and extends the composer ‘me’ in realtime — should keep me busy for a bit…
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Acosta, Arsenault, Ashton-Beaucage, Barrette, Basanta, Beaudoin, Bergeron, Bond, Bowles, Boyko…92 tracks