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Apophenia Cloud Travel Apparatus

by Anders Monrad

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1 03:00
2 05:00
3 07:00
4 06:00
5 05:00
Σ k k = 1 04:00


These tracks are based on time stretched sounds created using my first, early attempt at programming a granular synthesizer in Pure Data. For this synthesizer, I inadvertently implemented a typical “beginners-error" in the algorithm, by basing the "scroll function" (which reads prerecorded audio files at varying speeds) on a “control" object, rather than a “dsp”-object. This causes a discrepancy between the control data (which transmits control messages in a “coarser resolution”) and the actual dsp-based algorithm (working by continuous streams of data. This temporal "mismatch" resulted in unintentional rhythmic shifts (accumulations) of the individual grains, causing a “stuttering”, glitch-like rhythmic structure of the grains.
This structure was nonetheless quite fascinating and had a particularly discreet mesmerizing effect on the resulting time stretched sounds. I first exploited this effect in my sound design for the exhibition "Apophenia Cloud Travel Apparatus" by visual artist Jacob Tækker at Overgaden (Cph gallery) in 2014. Here I experimented with different "timegrains" (time-resolutions) in the control-object, and even timegrains that switched over time.

This resulted in varying interferences between grain frequency and control frequency, and thus alternating rhythmic shifts and patterns.
An accidental error thus became the starting point for a complete aesthetic, musical experiment. For this vinyl record I have further developed this experiment and created 6 different tracks. Apart from the original granular synthesizer, I have also incorporated sounds from two other synthesizers (developed especially for this record).
These additional sounds are heard on track 2 and track 4 (as well as on track 6, which consists of the sum of all the other 5 tracks superimposed on top of each other). The First synth (track 2) is a simple sample player where the sound (by varying delay) in the two channels is out of phase (which in theory creates an effect of a sound source that revolves around the listener).
The Second synth is an additive synthesizer with an "orchestra" of sine tones that constantly increases in frequency, inspired by “shepard tones” - which creates the illusion of an infinitely ascending tone, thus supporting the kaleidoscopic and mesmerizing effect of the timestretch synthesizer.


released February 16, 2021


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