April 28, 2018

6.00 am: Floor exercises. I’m now 0.4 Kg off my initial weight target (68 Kg). Once I’ve hit that mark, I shall work towards a further 4 Kg reduction. Then, I’ll be as heavy as I was in my early 20s, well within the ‘healthy’ zone, and far enough away from the ‘underweight’ category. My two sons have been an inspiration. Both have exemplary attitudes to fitness and eating. I’m in their debt. In a fortnight, I hope to be in the swimming pool at this time on a Saturday morning. 8.00 am: A communion. The spirit requires its own exercise:

8.30 am: The final 5 seconds of ‘Enn’ required an adjustment to the fade. The Suite was now complete. My instinct is to incorporate the composition into The Aural Bible III album, as part of a double CD package. All ‘The Talking Bible’ compositions will, then, be on the other disc. I moved onto the Habakkuk project. There are two initial challenges: the one, conceptual and procedural; the other, technical. Ideally, the two should grow out of one another and together.

To begin, I needed to extract a text from the Book of Habakkuk to provide the substance for my inscription. The governing verse is this:

And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it (Habakkuk 2.2).

The vision is, more properly, a series of oracles, some of which are spoken by God before this verse and others, after. My focus will be on chapter 1, verses 5 to 11 and chapter 2, verses 2 to 20. Habakkuk would probably have written the vision in wax on boxwood tablets large enough to be readable in a public place. ‘Plain’ implies that the writing was to be clearly legible. The final clause is problematic. It can be translated in several ways. I’m inclined to think that it refers to those who would run passed the tablets in, say, a market square.  They would need to be able to take in the message at a glance. The themes of the text is are those of judgement, condemnation, comeuppance catastrophe, death, violence, and woe. Pretty grim:

Technologically, I’ll develop a rig capable of recording the act of writing using large scale, lower-case, non-cursive letters. Block capitals aren’t easily read at speed. The intention is to capture the sound of a pencil on paper (an inscription into wax would be almost inaudible), using three microphones. One would be attached to the pencil, another placed under the support to which the paper is secured, and another above the support. These sources (perspectives) could, then, be mixed together. However, I was short of a 3.5mm TRS to XLR converter. Experimentation would have to wait until one was procured.

There was an improvisation undertaken at the Turn Table: The Cleansing of the Temple open-studio event, held at the School of Art Gallery last year, that I wanted to upload to my Studium account and make publicly available:

1.30 pm: Into town to fulfil some domestics, and enjoy the sunshine and blossoms. The wind chill was odds with the day:

2.30 pm: Back at home, I reviewed the two ‘TestStylophonics’ samples on the Studium site. These pieces have mile to go. They were improvised using a Stylophone played through MoogerFooger effectors. Perhaps the idea can be developed as a longer improvisation event at the School of Art Gallery, next academic year. I’ve in mind developing a rolling program of lunchtime sound art events for this venue.

Towards he close of the afternoon, I began setting up a test-zone for my contact microphones, in preparation for ‘Write Up the Vision’ to get underway over the next few weeks:

In vain, I tried to record my heartbeat with my new electric stethomicrophone. I need either an impedance converter or to run the device into a 3 volt plug-in power source, and then onto the mixer. Or else, I have no heart:

5.20 pm: ‘Switch off, John!’







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