This Is It! This is the New Music! Again. More Stained Melodies

Monday 2 April 2007

I’ve finally gotten around to uploading some more mp3s of my music. Everything I’ve been working on lately is pretty long, so here are some shorter pieces written over the past few years that I can still stand to listen to.
The two new additions are from a series of 24 piano pieces called Stained Melodies. The material for Stained Melodies was selected through the use of chance operations on a large array of MIDI keyboard works freely available on the internet. Rather than make a conventional collage, these pieces take only one kind of pitch from each selected work, all of which are then played back simultaneously. In effect, each melody is a collaboration between numerous ghost pianists, none of whom can hear each other; the majority of their music erased. A more detailed explanation is on the download page.
This set of pieces is quite likely impossible for a human pianist to play. To put it beyond any doubt, several additional adjustments were made to take advantage of a computer realization. Dynamics change abruptly from one note to the next, and the sustain pedal only works for the least occurring notes in each piece. Finally, the tuning was modified so that the piano retunes itself in each piece to suit the harmonic qualities of the most frequently occurring note.
At the moment, only Nos. 2, 12, and 18 are available for download: they’re about 3MB each. Two other, later works are available on the main music page. Comments are welcome and may be concise as, but not necessarily limited to:
  1. I played this while my flatmate was in the house, and he stopped and listened to it and said, 'It doesn't have much of a tune, does it?'.

    The effects are interesting. I'll see if I can persuade the people at a nearby Brunswick cafe to play it… But are all your pieces so thoroughly randomised? Not saying you should go down the Stockhausen route and become a nutter, but maybe put a little more blue cheese and electricity into the air…

  2. It's hard to imagine this being played in a cafe, but thanks for trying. Not everything I write sounds quite so scattershot, but pretty much everything is either chance-derived or arbitrary to some degree.

    Will try to upload some more coherent tunes when I've checked my server space.

  3. I enjoyed them although I prefer the Canon in Beta. My wife was down the hall in our bedroom trying to get our son to sleep and she thought she heard Chopin and then Liszt but not quite. I remember your work as a teenager. In particular the piece you did of inner grooves of records all blended together. I would be keen to hear more of your music

  4. Whoa, the teenage work! I did a remake/remodel of the inner groove piece a few years back, it's around here somewhere I think.

    Plans are afoot to get more music online once I've thought it all through a little bit.