integer on 16 Nov 2000 17:03:35 -0000

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[Nettime-bold] Re: [ot] [!nt] \n2+0\ NN kontra 7 Jean.Piche@umontreal Thu Nov 16 17:34 112/7033 "V I D E O S - M U S I"

        dze originale, shld u need (surely for ur oun ref.) :


                                            re. krop3rom 
                                (in its 98-track version) expectations of a consistently uncompromising
musical conception were initially dashed by an off-putting
drumkit-based backbeat groove that struck me as a
capitulation to the mass taste -- a sort of projection
into the dance hall. I soon decided that this relentless
rock backbeat, which does not consume all that much of the
work's total running time, is an effective foil for the
conceptual abstractions that indeed make up most of the
piece. That groove is based on a dark secundal ostinato
that is too forbidding for the delicate ears of most of
pop cultureís inhabitants (from my elitistís podium Iíll
shout: That pleases me). 

krop3rom's sound world is varied and rich, with a
significant amount of granular synthesis and some passages
sounding like the spaceship SuperCollider. ConcrŤte
techniques appear to be limited to recordings of human
voices delivering text. The piece is highly oscillator and
noise-based in its textures. In general, these are
rough-edged sonorities -- really nice stuff indeed.
Thereís compression, gobs of it -- itís almost as though
weíve got a RealAudio-readied pre-master -- another thing
that, at first, put me off. 

Text is often heard -- English, German, and French, and
half the times it seems to be one or another kind of
protest. Much of the German is processed and inflected in
such a way as to evoke impassioned wax-recorded speeches
of the early 20th Century. The piece is dripping with
angst from start to finish (putting it, straight away,
into my camp), and it even contains the "staging" of a
political execution. One of the few English lines,
delivered by a woman whose saccharine smile can be seen
ever so clearly in the mind's eye, is spoken in a style
reminiscent of a dehumanizing industrial training video.
Thus, she interjects de-contextually: "Fuck freely,
orgasmic therapy, bioelectric charge and discharge -- a
genital embrace. Fuck freely, communist movement...[chop]"
A decontextualization, a non sequitur? Potent symbolism or
sensationalism? I must leave that open, but Iíll suggest
that the composer of krop3rom was committed to producing a
work of artistic value and expressiveness. I do not
question his integrity in carrying out that goal. My
basis? What can I say -- the basis is no more than lots of
careful listening over many years. In spite of the
aforementioned musical compromise -- a calculated use of
non-related genre-specific material (I can be bashed for
that), I take the position that nothing in this piece is

The CD's 61 minutes are laid out over 98 individual
tracks, with the 98th one's first four minutes (its total
in duration is 4:38, 5 seconds past the magic number)
housing a diabolical dead-silence. If we persist (or
inadvertently let the CD run on through the first four
silent minutes of this final track), we get a classic
'orpism -- the sudden eruption of hostile sounds: the
stereo system is self-destructing (some listeners will
never realize itís even there). This is close to a sonic
analogue of antiorp's final cluster of ascii-art featured
in many of his postings. The penultimate track ends with a
strikingly haunting figure rendered by a woman's voice
chopped by both a slow-grained and a very fine-grained
process. This is a gorgeous moment that is setup, in less
than masterful, almost utilitarian manner, by the work's
one really significant (near-)"developmental" passage -- a
long section of sustained material led by a microtonally
tuned church-organ. This part of the score, which strongly
suggests time-travel, functions as a release and contrast
from the tension-filled beginning and middle sections.
Antiorp's chopped, semi-valedictory woman is a stroke of
genius and makes a superb moment. But is it enough? When
delving ten seconds or two minutes or 4:06 into the abyss
of #98, it is enough. It is more than enough. Its haunting
beauty still rings in fulfilling echoes. How generous of
the great cyber-manipulator to offer four minutes within
which to decide whether or not that perfect ending will be
one's own ending -- this time. But one isn't aware that
the choice exists unless one has suffered the
disorientation of 98's final 31 seconds of hair-raising
sound, an enactment of frantic scrubbing of the radio dial
in search of... Kundry's kiss.

krop3rom is more interesting than most of the "serious"
work coming from inside or outside of academe, yet the
work's episodic nature was a problem for me at first. Its
frequent shifting will cause seekers of formal refinement
to leave in frustration. The formal structure may owe to a
stochastic base, through which krop3rom would exhibit a
local chaos ( "episodic" sections, more than half of
the piece), but a global determinism. It does have shape,
and even recapitulation, but it really boils down to a
drama in sound -- a melodrama, and a gripping one indeed,
one which ends in full flowering ambiguity. There is no
resolution, no release, and no answer. And like the
antiorp cyber-persona, this piece is infused with musical
evocation of the cyclical word games we see on max-l, a
rhetorical statement/rejoinder syndrome, and it is so at
the level of its compositional syntax. Interestingly
enough, this is a consideration unlikely to enter the
consciousness of non-list members who aren't conditioned
by luxurious message-postings, and the fact that such
rhetorical cycles are at the syntax-level will not be a
problem for many listeners who can approach this work
non-programmatically. However, this technique, one which
diminishes the sense of organic interrelationships in the
piece, is a problem for me. This is not a fatal flaw, and
once I accepted this work's alliance with the popular
culture, or dare I suggest, to the cyber-culture, even the
gaming sub-culture, rather than to the "concert-music" or
"classical" world, I came to be on better terms with it.
But none of my proposed "alliances" is adequately specific
-- krop3rom belongs to an emerging genre of art-music or
"sound-art" that is a new synthesis.

Listen also to krop3rom. It will reward that effort. A
view of its surface yields the sonic equivalent of
antiorp's web persona. This is utterly uncanny, and more
than entertaining enough. Then dig below the surface.
There lies a compelling work -- one that transcends the
single life form of its creator. I like it immensely.

Then dig below the surface.
There lies a compelling work -- one that transcends the
single life form of its creator. I like it immensely.

one that transcends the
single life form

letz b!ozkulpt


>hello extraordinary creature

yes alex

>haha ;)  very imaginative. now you want.

occupation: i desire to rent

>blp blp blblb blp

u uant 2 g!v l!fe +?


dance at sea

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