April 9, 2018

I watch, and am as a sparrow alone upon the house top (Psalm 107.2)

Saturday. I completed structural amendments to PedalBoard II. These permit the four Eventide boxes to be removed from the board easily, when they’re required for another network of effectors. The source material for ‘The Lesser Light’ was prepared in readiness for my first excursion into composition on Monday. Health wise, my blood pressure oscillates. I’m planning a week of working at home, in between myriad medical appointments.

Today. 8.15 am: A communion. 9.00 am: I worked my way through emails that’d come through over the weekend: the trivial, the troubling, and the telling. 10.00 am: Into the studio and onto the bench to set up modifiers to process ‘The Lesser Light’ source material. First, it needed to be re-equalised in order to diminish the presence of Scourby’s voice and emphasise the vinyl’s surface noise. Then, the source was processed through a variety of filters that further clarified, isolated, and exaggerated the characteristics of the sonorities:


I returned to digital manipulation, and to a software for stretching sound that I’d not been able to use before, because it was designed to work on Linux and Windows operating systems only. (I’ve since acquired a second-hand PC laptop.) The longest stretch it can perform is over 15 trillion years in length. The result of stretching (slowing down) the source material ×20 was remarkable enough: ethereal, troubling, and eminently useable. I’ve always associated the process is lengthening sound material with that of magnifying. Under this ‘lens’, you hear details that aren’t audible in normal time.  When Ranger 7 passed over the surface of the moon, the images would have been photographed using some degree of magnification, and were later enlarged for the purposes of analysis:

‘Altitude: 34 miles. Area 16 miles on a side’, Ranger 7 (courtesy of WikiCommons)

In the evening, I continued stretching sections of the source until I’d sufficient material to continue with composition during the week ahead. During periods when the files were being processed, I looked more closely at some of the probe’s photographs.



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