February 20, 2016

9.15 am. A late start. After email attention, I walked to shop at the rather forlorn Farmers’ Market. The choice of fresh vegetables was equally dismal:


10.15 am. I began a long overdue review of sections 1 to 6 of Image and Inscription. The process of more tightly knitting together and interrelating the components had begun. The problem of undertaking any serial composition is that the later parts tend to be better than the earlier ones. In other words, there’s been a progressive amelioration of understanding and execution. The fruit of the later sections (the acquired wisdom, expertise, and achievement, and some of the motifs, techniques, and devices) must now be dug into the earlier sections’ soil.

12.00 pm. Having completed an initial revision of section 1, I charted section 8 on my ‘storyboard’. This visualises the main events and structure of the narrative, and identifies the sonic and visual features of each section. Its been an invaluable, objective aid to generating ideas and steering the course of the composition:


1.40 pm. On to section 2. While it deals with only one verse (whereas section 8 responds to ten chapters), it still felt too succinct — at just over one and a half minutes running time — and too many of the sounds ran concurrently. They needed to be separated out in order to better yield their nuances and distinct properties. The internal rhythms of some samples had been underplayed too. The core beat was accented by short-burst drones, reminiscent of those used in section 7, and washes.

4.45 pm. The dreariness has persisted throughout the day:


5.15 pm. Press: ‘Shut Down’. 6.30 pm Practice session 1. 7.30 pm. An evening with my wife.