EARS HAVE EYES // Episode 12
Airing Wednesday, January 11, 2023 at 8 pm MST
on CJSW 90.9 FM
FUTURE CASTING: science fiction sounds & speculative stores
Marie Kollek & Teddy Larue
Co-hosted by Wayne Garrett & Caitlind Brown, edited by Caitlind.
EARS HAVE EYES is a monthly sound art radio program airing on CJSW 90.9 FM in Calgary/Mohkinstsis. You can listen to podcasts of previous episodes here.
For our first episode of 2023, we’re turning our ears towards science fiction sounds & speculative stories. The new year elicits speculation about the future. Where are we going? In a time marked by uncertainty and shadowed by pandemic, war, climate crisis, and social reckoning, how can sound pair with imagination to expand our sense of what’s possible?
This episode of EARS HAVE EYES invited participation from artists forecasting and spell-casting the future. Whether instrumental or narrative, dystopian or utopian, outer-spacey or inner-spacey, technical or magical, this month’s episode invited artists to squint into the distance, imagining what could be.
Our program features sampled audio from 1950s science fiction radio play, X Minus One.
Thanks to the participating artists and our friends at CJSW!
Alfredo Cerrito is an Italian composer, saxophonist, conductor and arranger. His interest in sound experimentation, combined with his experience as a musician and performer of all musical genre, pushes him to search for ever new sounds and soundscapes.
About THE REMEMBRANCE OF PRESENT:
“Neither future nor past exists. It is inaccurate to say that there are three periods: past, present and future. Perhaps it would be correct to say that there are three periods: the present of the past, the present of the present, the present of the future. These three kinds of periods exist in some way in the soul: the present of the past is the memory, the present of the present is the vision, the present of the future is the expectation. The compositional work aims to create a strong link between the present, the past and the future. We draw from what we have been (past) to live our present experiences, which enriched will be projected into the future, through our imaginative capacity, a characteristic that distinguishes man from every other living being present on our planet. This is represented in the composition (“The memory of the present”) by a melodic piano fragment. Metaphorically it indicates something that has been, but at the same time something that is and something that will be. The fragment is continually struck by interferences of various kinds which modify it, eliminating or enriching its morphological spectrum aspect, making it perceived in a different space from time to time up to a breaking point or rather, a point of no return in which all the previously treated and appeared materials mix in a FUTURIST sound … We have arrived with the imagination in another world and it is here that we can build our future, the future of everyone, hoping that it will be a better future and not just UTOPIA.”
Chelidon Frame is an experimental electronic music project that mainly works with field recordings, radio interferences, guitars and processed sounds. His installations are experience-based and suggest a dialogue between the location (both virtual and physical) and the sounds proposed, aiming to deliver a message in the simpler yet most effective way. The use of code, data analysis and data-driven sounds, allow information to be experienced anew. In his studio works and live sets, different layers of sounds – guitars, synthesizers and custom-made instruments – piles up creating unexpected new soundscapes.
About Mental Static:
“The year is 1997 and my 7-year-old self is watching a phosphor green caret blinking on a deep black background. I can’t write a line of code, but the aesthetic is charming, with its strictness, its coldness, and its simple yet functional design. A floppy disk is the only way to store data, and you have to be careful, selective in what you want to preserve.
The year is 2014 and Chelidon Frame is born, an electroacoustic project where I can turn myself loose and experiment with sounds, structures, and unconventional approaches. Since the beginning of this voyage, I always wanted to do a coding/programming-related series of songs, to recapture both the aesthetic and the limitations of those initial days.
The year is 2021 and after hearing what overly compression and bit rate reduction can do to a sound I came up with an idea: do a full digital 10-minutes track – limiting myself only in using software instruments, without actual recordings – and shrink it down to the overall quality of 8kbps, to let it fit inside a floppy disk or through a 56k modem connection. The result is a new piece, where the imperfections and the difference between today and twenty years ago emerge in the foreground, resulting in a completely new and different aural perspective.
The main theme in this 10-minute soundscape named “Mind Static” is coding, coding errors, and less common (and therefore evocative) subjects, from esoteric hexadecimal code DEAD10CC to frequent bad approaches like “Cargo cult programming”.
Gregory Kramer is a multidisciplinary artist and musician working with sound and space. Taking inspiration from his archaeological curiosity of abandoned places, he seeks ghosts among ruins and unearths evidence of forgotten histories through sound.
4 Minutes, 18 Seconds Ago (abandoned farmhouse, Botswana, dusk) was created from field recordings made with several audio recorders in various parts of an abandoned farmhouse in Botswana, near the Limpopo River. The title refers to the immediate past, but the composition also references ghosts of the distant past. Acting as ”ears”, the recorders were placed in areas of the house where once there had been human activity. The first recorder was placed in the living room, by the fireplace. The second recorder was placed in the bathroom, and the third recorder was placed in the hallway just before turning onto the veranda. The placement of recorders at various points in the house references the time traveled between them (you hear footsteps approaching before each one is shut off), and time travel is, again, a reference to the presence of former inhabitants. The recordings began just before sunset and continued until the full moon had risen. The house had no roof, resulting in recorded sounds of the surrounding bushveld wildlife. However, intermingled with the dusk recording was a recording of the same location from several days earlier. The composition has a supernatural atmosphere, playing with timeframe literally in a matter of days as well as lifetimes.
Marie Kollek & Teddy Larue
Marie Kollek and Teddy Larue are two sound artists who live and work in Leipzig. Teddy Larue graduated in Fine Arts with a focus on sound from the Haute Ecole des Arts du Rhin in Mulhouse. Teddy Larue’s artworks are based on a critical approach of listening to our social world and reality, questioning the documentation of space by approaching listening with a cultural, social or narrative angle. Marie Kollek is a sociologist and multidisciplinary artist focusing on sound installations and experimental formats such as sound and body performances.
Taste of a Dream is a live improvised experimental music performance by Marie Kollek and Teddy Larue that explores a dystopian future between climate change, war, acceleration and capitalism. It works with sounds of our natural environment distorted to the point of unrecognizability. One hears birds, the buzzing of insects, the sound of water, drops, drought, gunshots, silence, the cry of a world in the process of perishing. All sounds are not used in their natural form, but ecofuturistically distorted, repeated, changed. The artists thus create an image of the future that unfolds like an abyss based on immersive, threatening sound worlds.
moody alien is a (sound) artist living in Thessaloniki, Greece. He took up writing at a very young age, while reading literature & listening to music avidly; he eventually started making his own music in 2001, without previously bothering to be instructed on how it’s supposed to be done and during these years he has actually insisted on not learning things any way other than experimenting and listening to the results. His approach could be summarized in: “if it sounds good, then it is good”…
Founder and director of the Thirsty Leaves Music label & of MAGAM, he has released music alone as well as with company, published a book, created or helped with visual artworks, DJed in person or on radio shows and produced or remixed others’ music …and will continue to do so for as long as that provides him with a sense of purpose and it’s possible.
moody alien does not care to share personal information with anyone he has not met, but he can reveal that he finds talking about himself in the 3rd person extremely entertaining.
Twenty Seven and a Half Thousand Lifetimes was included as a bonus track on the digital version of MAGAM‘s second full-length release, Another, which (just like the previous, One) was loosely based on moody alien’s book The Flame Within or The Little Flame That Has Itself For Dinner Over And Over Again – a tragicomic, surrealistic play about 2 men, One & Another, in a kind of existential search- from where it also got its title: a reference to the subjectivity of our time in existence, our lifespan compared to that of other living creatures…
Călin Torsan – hulusi
Andrei Kivu – The MIDIcello (i.e. custom-made electric cello) & effects
moody alien – (processed) glockenspiel, effects & treatments, mixing & mastering
Thomas Ellison is a UK-based musician who is interested in electronic music, poetry and natural sounds. He makes electronic music: Rhythm Of The Birds | Symbal (bandcamp.com) and has created a composition for a global sound project Well-Being Cities – sustainability, sound and the urban environment (citiesandmemory.com).
Planet Full of Song imagines what an ecologically abundant planet might sound like. It blends lyrics with electronic synths, electronic pianos and natural sounds, including field recordings of ocean waves and birdsong.
Wayne DeFehr is a classically trained pianist in the Royal Conservatory of Music program, and has composed sound for live theatre, video and film. He serves on the board of the Boreal Electroacoustic Music Society in Edmonton.
About Prairie Time Travel:
“I wanted to connect the theme of Future Casting with my experience of driving in rural areas of Manitoba and Alberta and appreciating what seems to be the timelessness of the prairies. But who knows how these areas will be altered because of climate change. The music is a kind of tone poem to express the complicated feelings the prairies evoke.”
Thank you to the artists & listeners!
Special thanks to CJSW.
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