release date: 17 October 2023
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I built this new composition ‘polytonal wander’ from five recent recordings using different methods and devices for each. Firstly, a new modular element in my small Eurorack mix is an ERM Polygogo polygonal synthesis generator which allows very interesting signal creation using multiple control voltages applied to eight different parameters. I patched randomised CV in from a couple of BASTL Kastle instruments.     

Secondly, I used my MakeNoise Morphagene to generate manipulations of various field recordings… and thirdly I collected new EMF recordings with my trusty SOMA Ether roaming over a collection of electronics comms and security boxes that have gradually accumulated on a mundane wall in a staff kitchenette at the school where I teach experimental drawing.     

A fourth sequence was generated with very low frequency wave forms output from a Mordax Data unit that allows fine grain control of shapes, hertz and overlay modulation between two waveforms.     

Finally, fifthly, for a deep analogue element, I tied a pair of small kalimbas together, one facing up and one facing down, so I could play them simultaneously. Both have five steel tines, but one, made in Germany, is very sweetly chromatically tuned, and the other, made in north Africa, is, let’s say, intuitively tuned and has buzzing rings fitted onto each tine, which is a traditional and sonically important element of many African instruments. I used one of my Tascam recorders to capture an impromptu performance with this ad hoc assembly in the bathroom.    

As ever, this composition, constructed over a couple of days from the five original tracks, is offered as an experimental divertissement, a strange, hopefully intriguing gift of sculpted sound, something to accompany your creative making or as a transport into unknown imaginaries.