In the late nineteenth century two facts conspired to change the face of music: the collapse of common practice tonality (which overturned the certainties underpinning the world of art music), and the invention of a revolutionary new form of memory, sound recording (which redefined and greatly empowered the world of popular music).
A tidal wave of probes and experiments into new musical resources and new organisational practices ploughed through both disciplines, bringing parts of each onto shared terrain before rolling on to underpin a new aesthetics able to follow sound and its manipulations beyond the narrow confines of ‘music’. This series tries analytically to trace and explain these developments, and to show how, and why, both musical and post-musical genres take the forms they do.
In PROBES #34 a sequence of new, purely electronic, instruments appear – amongst them (the) electrophon, kurbelspharophon, ondes Martenot, dynophone, croix sonore, pianorad, trautonium and mixtur trautonium – none having any obvious place in the existing vocabulary of musics. In parallel an alien aesthetic begins to redefine the parameters of ‘musical’ sound.
01 Gregorio Paniagua, ‘Anakrousis’, 1978
02 Great organ of Notre-Dame, out of tune
03 The Order of Bobs, ‘Sic Transit Gloria Mundi’
04 Jörg Mager, ‘Stärker als Paragraphen’, soundtrack (excerpt), 1936
05 Nathalie Forget and Imsu Choi play Ondes Martenot and Metallique
06 Nathalie Forget and Imsu Choi play Ondes Martenot and Palme
07 Nathalie Forget and Imsu Choi play Ondes Martenot and Resonance
08 Olivier Messiaen, ‘Chant D’Amour’ (excerpt), 1948
09 Arthur Honegger, soundtrack for Berthold Bartosch’s ‘L’Idée’ (excerpt), 1932
10 Richard Rodney Bennett, ‘Anya’, 1967
11 Jonny Greenwood, ‘Smear’ (excerpt), 1996
12 Barry Gray, ‘Fireball XL5’ title theme (excerpt), 1962
13 Harald Genzmer, ‘Concerto for Mixtur Trautonium and Orchestra’ (excerpt), 1952
15 Paul Hindemith, ‘Des kleinen Elektromusikers Lieblinge’ (excerpts), 1930. Performed by Oskar Sala (1977)
16 Paul Hindemith, ‘Langsames stück und Rondo, für Trautonium’ (excerpts),1935. Performed by Oskar Sala
17 Oskar Sala, ‘Crows/School, Birds Atllack/After Explosion, The End’ (excerpts) 1963
18 Harald Genzmer, ‘Suite des Danses pour Instruments Électroniques. Ostinato Accelerando’ (excerpt) 1958, performed by Peter Pichler
19 Joe Pantano, demo (excerpt)
20 Gregorio Paniagua, ‘Anakrousis’, 1978