A key innovation of our 2020 online event was our Global Visual Music Marathon stream, which ran all night (UK time), with us passing the baton to Seeing Sound friends in North America, Asia and Australasia. For this event we wanted to cater for access from all timezones, and this was a great way to highlight that! The programme ran as follows, with GMT and local times:
22:30 – 01:00 GMT | 17:30 – 20:00 EST, Sat 12 Dec – Montréal Programme, curated by Myriam Boucher and Jean Piché:
Montréal joins the Seeing Sound streaming event with a collection of videomusic works by some of its major practitioners, many who are old habitués of Seeing Sound. Some vintage, some new, with speeds to see and colors to hear.
Isotone – Prémices (1:00)
Line Katcho – Simulacre (7:20)
Jean-Philippe Pierre-Louis – Puntito_visual (6:33)
Karol Couture – Bird of Flames (5:11)
Jocelyn Robert – Dry Lake (11:31)
Raphaël Néron – Waldeinsamkeit (5:00)
Myriam Boucher – Phases (17:00)
Désert mauve – microstars (10:00)
Jean Piché – Tempus Fugit (6:30)
Ilyaa Ghafouri – Soft Corps (7:28)
Félix Bonjour – Hors-Cadre (4:54)
Frédéric Lemelin – Morrigan (5:59)
Léa Boudreau – Triggers (2:00)
Maxime Corbeil-Perron [re]:generativ (11:00)
Sonya Stefan et Stefan Christoff – Organ Rhythms Under the Rain (3:56)
Yan Breuleux – Tempêtes (21:00)
Félix Bonjour – Survol (4:34)
8Louis Dufort – bjvfewo (4:49)
Guillaume Vallée et Véronique Marengère – Voish of Magic (5:01)
Simon Coovi-Sirois – soft atrophy (2:13)
David Arango-Valencia – Debridement Gold (6:00)
01:30 – 03:00 Sun 13 Dec GMT | 18:30 – 20:00 Sat 12 Dec MTZ – Duelling Axes, Live performance from Edmonton, Canada, curated by B.E.A.M.S.
This programme was accessed through the B.E.A.M.S. Twitch channel at https://www.twitch.tv/beamsdotca
Presented by: B.E.A.M.S. (The Boreal Electro-Acoustic Music Society).
Duelling Axes is an ongoing B.E.A.M.S. event where experimental sound and music artists use the left and right outputs of their instruments or devices to control a digital oscilloscope. The effects are unique to each artist from messy lines to beautiful patterns. Performer details (local time):
18:30-18:40 – Brief intro
18:40-19:00 – Reinhard Von Berg
19:00-19:20 – SkruntSkrunt
19:20-19:40 – Shawn Pinchbeck
19:40-20:00 – Daniel Cramer
FB Event page:
03:30 – 06:30 GMT | 14:30 – 17:30 ACT, Sun 13 Dec – SeenSound 2020 highlights from Melbourne, curated by Brigid Burke and Mark Pederson:
SeenSound is delighted to be participating in a Global Visual Music Marathon organised by Seeing Sound UK.
Featuring livestreams from around the globe, the visual music marathon will include highlights of the 2020 season on SeenSound, focusing on Australiasian artists, including:
Alice Bennett, Allinaire, Adrian Sherriff, Brigid Burke, Chris Mann, Cissi Tsang, David Hirst, Diana Clark, Dirk De Bruyn, Donna Hewitt, Doug de Vries, Grania Burke, Howie Hill, Jake Richards & Don Gray, John Drumond, Jutta Pryor, Mark Pedersen, MASONIK, Nunique Quartet (Megan Kenny Steve Falk, Charles MacInnes, Brigid Burke), PAUSAII (Adrian Sherriff/Brigid Burke), Paul Pax Andrews, Roger Alsop, Ros Bandt, Sabel Hede, Sophie Rose, Stephen Jones, Severed Heads, Tony Yap & Takashi Tagiguchi, Vanessa White, Vicki Hallet, Victor Spiegel and Warren Burt
10:00 – 11:00 GMT | 18:00 – 19:00 HKT, Sun 13 Dec – Relentless Melt No. 19: Hong Kong Visual Music, curated by Max Hattler:
A screening of sound and music-driven abstract animation works made by students, graduates and faculty from the School of Creative Media at City University of Hong Kong. Relentless Melt is a Hong Kong-based society for abstract and experimental moving image which regularly presents screenings around Hong Kong and internationally including Taiwan, Germany, England, Austria, Denmark and the USA.
11:00 – 12:00 GMT | 19:15 – 20:15 HKT, Sun 13 Dec – SoundLabPresents: Audio-Visual work from Hong Kong, curated by Ryo Ikeshiro:
A selection of sound and moving image works by PerMagnus Lindborg, Ryo Ikeshiro, András Blazsek, Edwin Lo, Manni Chen and Alexmalism AKA Alex Yiu.
SoundLab is a recently established research group at the Centre for Applied Computing and Interactive Media, City University of Hong Kong.
01 Ryo Ikeshiro – Composition: White Square, White Circle – extended version (2013)
Composition: White Square, White Circle is a fixed-media screening/installation work. It is an “audiovisualisation”, where the same data and process generate both the sound and the moving image. It is a homage to the Russian Suprematist artist Kazimir Malevich.
The same process in the digital medium generates both the sound and the moving image, and movements and patterns that are seen can also be heard and vice versa. Simple abstract designs are used, based on folding into a square and stretching into a circle, much like kneading dough. These shapes are moved to and fro, and gently transformed into complex structures and then back again.
02 Edwin Lo – Procession (2016)
video game / installation
Based on the field recordings made in 2007, Processions (2016) reveals the resonance of religious occasions of the Taoism procession of the Hunger Ghost Festival in a simulated environment. By using different signs and assets of game engine Unity3D, the work situates sound in the game environment and the work tries to reexamine the perspectives and gestures of listening and the relationship between auditory and visual experiences in a digital/simulated environment and with positioning sound as subject in game, it conveys the artist’s question and reflection of how sound art and game art emerging together.
With situating field recordings in a digital environment instead of pure transmissions through psychical records, do our listening experiences changed? Does it affect our usual perception of sound, and how? The work itself is not meant to an end as a game to be played and but also as a process of exploring with experiences, listening, observing details and signs with auditory materials.
03 András Blazsek – Vertical Acoustics – Battery Harris (2017)
Music for piano wire, drone and an aluminum pendulum plumb.
In recent years, increasing numbers of public and private spaces are affected by the sound of drones. Tracking the emergence of consumer drones, I could observe a change in the language used to talk about them – the “quadcopter” discusses in tech reviews, became the “drone” in everyday language – and as the connotation of the word “drone” recalls the military background of the instrument, the machine appeared affected by fear and the noise of vulnerability through surveillance. The sound instrument I built from a DJI Spark (a small consumer grade drone), a piano wire, and an aluminum pendulum plumb I turned on a metal lathe explores this issue of vulnerability. The drone was anchored to the ground and allowed to fly to the high vaulted ceiling, tethered and gently swinging its plumb.
Fort Tilden is a concrete structure at a former WWI military site on the beaches of Queens, in the Rockaways, New York. The area is now a popular site to visit for recreational purposes. The generally calm soundscape of the ocean site coexists with the visually brutalist concrete structure of the gun case mates, the only reminder of the noises and blasts of WWI war instruments once housed by the camouflaged casemates. The sound instrument with drone, piano wire and pendulum plumb was used on one occasion to capture and enhance the soundscape of the abandoned military site near the Atlantic Ocean to introduce the hum of the drone into the soundscape of the de-militarized area.
Residency Unlimited is a Brooklyn based artist-in-residence program that I participated in 2017. The refurbished space of the former South Congregational Church hosts the residency. The acoustically challenging space of the church’s interior was the key element of the performance I made for the RU. The space became the acoustic body for my new instrument, which was able to resonate, refract, and scatter sound frequencies across the walls of the church, collaborating in the emergence of a ‘voice’ from the building.
04 Manni Chen – City Glitch (2020)
With the explosion of information, redundant messages seem like “visual glitch noise”, which is noisy but distracts people from overload work. This audio tries to show the complexity and paradox when people face information in this time, by displaying boisterous but partially relaxing glitch sound.
05 Ryo Ikeshiro – TT TT TT TT / TTTTTTTT (2018)
Pop music tracks are transformed so the pitch and speed continually fall lower and slower and further from happy hardcore heaven without ever becoming slower and lower. The process is known as the Risset rhythm based on the Shepard tone, an aural illusion equivalent to Escher’s Stairs. The accompanying music videos are also deccelerated, satirising the hyper-sexualisation of promotional videos.
The work is from the series Eternal Accelerando, a light-hearted response to accelerationism which calls for an acceleration of technosocial processes to subvert its neoliberal origins or to further capitalist progress to hasten its self-demise.
06 Alexmalism AKA Alex Yiu – This is My Home (2016)
The original footage were captured from the arrival of Queen Elizabeth II to Hong Kong on the 21st of Oct, 1986. It was a carnival where music served as an important function of representing Hong Kong in a critical moment where the colonialism was in the process of being replaced by a mixture of localism and nationalism. While most of the songs were sung in this event are mostly arrangements of Chinese folk songs, the main theme of the jingle is actually an original Children’s song “When We Were Young” composed and arranged by Joseph Koo. The metaphorical tension of music here is amplified by the generative audiovisual result of the algorithmic composition which I constructed.
The video jammed with glitches shatters the supposedly flawless visage of the digital. In this electronic world, malfunctions become everyday nuisance and they are quickly eliminated, but the same cannot be implied with real life glitches. The lyrics of “This is My Home” were written by James Wong, a prominent Hong Kong lyricists, for the Queen on her visit to Hong Kong in 1986; the lyrics depict precisely the HongKongese’ hopes and expectations of their land during the 1980s after its economic take-off. Thirty years later, Hong Kong had undergone numerous crises and turmoil; through algorithm, the artist converts the music while withholding traces and fragments of the lyrics, implying that the HongKongese are faced with a no longer familiar land.
07 PerMagnus Lindborg – Nosferatu Suite (2009)
from ‘Nosferatu’ by PerMagnus Lindborg, Friedrich Murnau et al. (1922/2009)
Friedrich Murnau’s Nosferatu is based on Bram Stoker’s Dracula. I felt that presenting this horror classic at the ‘Golden Village Monster Mania Festival’ in Singapore demanded an eclectic approach: a fusion of different kinds of music, with a sonic expression that echoes both the rawness of the film’s visuals and contemporary art life in South-East Asia. I therefore chose to work with the Iron Egg trio, Samuel Wong, and string players from YST Conservatory. While the string quintet suggests the expressionistic timbres of in-between wars central Europe, Iron Egg is a contemporary jazz ensemble with a musique concrète attitude to experimental club electronica. Between these two sound worlds, Sam Wong’s pipa, employing unorthodox extended techniques, functions both as a link and as a novel yet recognisable Asian sonority. The musicians, in separate sessions, interpreted composed fragments while viewing sequences from the film. The interpretations were further developed in a process of guided improvisation. The recording sessions allowed me to gather material for re-composition and post-production at Perspective House studios. I created new sounds by digitally transforming recordings and superposing layers to form a rich canvas of sound. I allowed myself no off-the-shelf sample bank material so all the sounds come from the original recordings. A constructive creative constraint in itself, this emphasises the homogeneity of the film’s sound world and resonates with its claustrophobic narrative.
PerMagnus Lindborg – composition, mixing, mastering
Iron Egg: Timothy O’Dwyer – bass clarinet, electronics, Brian O’Reilly – electric bass, electronics, Darren Moore – electronics
Samuel Wong – pipa
YST Conservatory String Quintet, Kwong Jiebao & Derek Lim – assistants
08 Edwin Lo – The Fall (2018)
Outlast-Poe Trilogy (2018-2019) begins as a digital study of the groundbreaking first person horror survival game Outlast (2015) from Red Barrel. Inspired by the narrative of the game, this project juxtaposes the psychological horror classic “The Fall of the House of Usher”, “The Tell-Tale Heart” and “The Pit and the Pendulum” by Edgar Allan Poe with the game scenes as a hybrid form of machinima-literature. This project consists three episodes, The Fall (2018), The Heart (2018) and The Pit (2019) and they convey the artist’s attempt in thinking the reproduction of soundscape of the video game with the juxtaposition of the text excerpted from the short stories of Poe that echoes with the psychological horror and the threshold of body.
By appropriating the game scenes and remaking the soundscape and soundtrack of the game scenes, the works detaches the mentality of horror, extreme, insanity, gore and tension of the game and constitutes certain suspension of the game scenes. It is misery, static, abstract and yet dull and dark. With selecting several vocabularies and phases of the novels, they constitute a second layer of suspension of emotion and sensation that echoes with the central theme of the game and the novel on insanity and horror in the state of mind.