Welcome to the 108th Touch Newsletter. Thomas Ankersmit’s debut for Touch is titled “Figueroa Terrace”. We are now taking pre-orders for this CD + free exclusive download. Release date is expected to be 28th April 2014. Details below.
Touch Radio 102 now broadcasting. Howlround are the duo of Robin The Fog and Chris Weaver who create recordings and performances entirely from manipulating natural acoustic sounds on a quartet of vintage reel-to-reel tape machines - with additional reverb or electronic effects strictly forbidden. This recording documents their first ever live performance at the Brighthelm Centre as part of the Resonance FM stage at the Great Escape Festival, Brighton, 18th May 2013.
Mike Harding will be playing new (inc. Thomas Ankersmit/BJNilsen/Anna von Hausswolff) and old (inc. S.E.T.I./Disinformation) at Private Island in downtown Los Angeles on the night of 28th March 2014. More info below…
We are compiling a database of recordings of the locked groove of the LP Anna von Hausswolff "Källan (Prototype)" at the end of side a of this release, whereby you can upload your recording and listen to all the submissions. Details on how you can submit your recording are below.
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TO:93 | Thomas Ankersmit "Figueroa Terrace"
Digipak CD - 1 track - 36:49
When you order in advance, you will receive two exclusive tracks by Thomas Ankersmit which will not appear on the album… This offer is only available to subscribers and TouchShop customers. The physical album will be sent on or around April 28th 2014.
1. Figueroa Terrace [listen to an excerpt]
Thomas Ankersmit is a musician and installation artist based in Berlin. Since 2006 his main instrument, both live and in the studio, has been the Serge analogue modular synthesizer.
Acoustic phenomena such as sound reflections, infrasonic vibration, otoacoustic emissions, and highly directional projections of sound have been an important part of his work since the early 2000s.
In the winter of 2011-2012 Ankersmit was invited by the CalArts electronic music studios, Los Angeles, where the Serge was originally developed in the early 1970s, to record new music with their heavily customized and recently restored "Black Serge" system.
In addition to conventional analog synthesis techniques (FM, AM, ring modulation, filtering, enveloping and panning under voltage control), Ankersmit used various kinds of waveshaping, distortion and feedback (both internally as well as via a microphone and speaker setup in the studio); oscillator-generated frequencies at the upper and lower limits of auditory perception; a patch matrix to control quick transitions; a homemade circuit-bending type interface to create momentary interruptions to the signal flow, and the scraping of a contact microphone. Aside from recording, editing, and a few instances of reverb no digital technology was used.
The music is finely tuned and highly detailed, yet also visceral and raw. Marked by sharp perceptual contrasts, the piece shifts between dense formations of electric noise, to fields of micro-events moving with an intuitive logic, and feedback-drones of overwhelming intensity. The sounds have a real-world physicality, bringing to mind swarms of locusts, distant storms and creaking machinery rather than "synthesizer music".
The piece was premiered in North America at REDCAT in downtown Los Angeles and in Europe at Berghain, Berlin, for the MaerzMusik Festival.
The music is originally quadraphonic and mixed to stereo for this release. Figueroa Terrace is Ankersmit's first full-length solo studio release.
Thomas Ankersmit: Serge analogue modular synthesizers, contact mic. Recorded at CalArts, Valencia and in Los Angeles, December 2011-February 2012. Thanks to Kye Potter, Kevin Drumm, Valerio Tricoli, Darrel Johansen, Kevin Fortune, and everyone at CalArts.
Pre-order Thomas Ankersmit "Figueroa Terrace" [CD + download] in the TouchShop
Also available: Thomas Ankersmit "Live in Utrecht" [CD] on Ash International
Touch Radio 102 | Howlround
7.03.14 - Brighthelm - 17:47 - 320 kbps
Howlround are the duo of Robin The Fog and Chris Weaver who create recordings and performances entirely from manipulating natural acoustic sounds on a quartet of vintage reel-to-reel tape machines - with additional reverb or electronic effects strictly forbidden. This recording documents their first ever live performance at the Brighthelm Centre as part of the Resonance FM stage at the Great Escape Festival, Brighton, 18th May 2013. It was the first time these delicate, bulky, unpredictable machines had ever left the studio - a complete step into the unknown - and therefore something of an occasion. This recording is presented without edits or overdubs, just the sound of four machines, two people and a huge tangle of quarter-inch tape, looping and snarling precariously around the venue.
Photo: Larry Gale.
Subscribe to the TouchPod podcast of TouchRadio via the iTunes Music Store
28.3.14 | Touch live in Los Angeles
Mike Harding will be playing new (inc. Thomas Ankersmit/BJNilsen/Anna von Hausswolff) and old (inc. S.E.T.I./Disinformation) at Private Island in downtown Los Angeles on the night of 28th March 2014.
Join Touch co-founder Mike Harding in downtown Los Angeles for an exploratory journey through the project's 32-year history, with visuals supplied by Harding's creative partner, Jon Wozencroft.
Stay late into the night for a special condensed edition of ShortWaveMusic's eight-hour-long magnum opus, «ALL NIGHT FLIGHT»: a wide-ranging sonic odyssey mixing environmental, religious, and radiophonic sound ecologies, collected around the world by producer Myke Dodge Weiskopf.
Also, in the gallery, enjoy a glass and mirror jewelry art installation created by Courtney Lynne Garvin.
Facebook: Touch and «ALL NIGHT FLIGHT» live in Los Angeles
Tone 45.6 | Anna von Hausswolff "Källan (Prototype)"
We are compiling a database of recordings of the locked groove of the LP Anna von Hausswolff "Källan (Prototype)" at the end of side a of this release, whereby you can upload your recording and listen to all the submissions. Instructions for when you receive your copy…:
Please record 60 seconds (no more) of the locked groove at the end of side a whilst it is playing on your record player. You can hear the recording Mike Harding made of the test pressing by clicking here.
Please name the file with your name like this – YourName.mp3
and upload via ftp here:
ftp address: touch33.net
…and email Touch with your record player information like this:
"recorded on an iPhone 5 from a test pressing played on a Vestax BDT-2500 belt driven turntable"
Thank you! Please note there are no rights to these recordings and anyone can gain access to them by logging in and downloading, so if you don't want anyone to have them, don't upload them!
Although this item has sold out in the TouchShop, you might be able still to pick up copies from selected outlets:
Europe: Anost (Berlin)
North America: Forced Exposure
Remember - this item will not be reissued and will not be available in any digital format.
Tone 50D | Jana Winderen "Out of Range"
Digital Download - 1 track - 40:00 - 668mb zip file [inc WAV, pdf booklet and pdf text files]
Performed, composed and recorded by Jana Winderen
Photography by Jon Wozencroft
A lower quality audio file will be available from all good download stores on 3rd March. However, we strongly recommend you obtain the version in TouchShop. It is better and cheaper…
1. Out of Range
"Out of Range" is an audio work based on ultrasound and echolocation used by bats, dolphins and other creatures who operate beyond the range of human hearing - 'seeing' with sound, or perhaps 'hearing' objects.
All sound is invisible; ultrasound is inaudible. Of course, many species have a greater range of hearing than us humans and also more specific and specialised with complex combinations of the different senses… Creatures on both land and under water produce and/or perceive very high sound frequencies. Some species of insects, birds, fish, and mammals can emit and hear ultrasound, used for communications, hunting and orientation. These creatures operate on a different level of perception to us, in an inaudible range above 20kHz…
Many animals also use the acoustic properties of a space; a bat for example can use the echo from a tower block wall to amplify their calls for mates in the autumn; a toadfish uses the shape of a cave to amplify their calls to protect their habitat. Whales use the different acoustic properties at different depths in the ocean at different pressure levels to send their long distance calls. An astonishing fact about moths is that they have a reflex action with their wings to shut down when they hear the bat echolocation calls… That we reckon that this is so astonishing says something about us…
The mix for the piece is based on ultrasound, hydrophone recordings below the water and also of echolocation sound within audible range. The recordings were made in various locations in Central Park and East River in New York, USA, a forest outside Kaliningrad in Russia, Regents Park in London, UK, and various locations in Madeira, Norway, Denmark and Sweden. The ultrasound is time-stretched to bring it into a frequency range audible for human beings.
Recordings were made on a Pettersson Ultrasound Detector D1000X, Reson 4032 and DPA 8011 hydrophones and 4060 dpa microphones onto a Sound Devices 477T hard disk recorder.
The photographs mirror "the audible range" through a contrast between gateways, portals and sight lines, set against situations where the camera eye cannot make sense of the optical event it is confronted with.
Deutschlandradio Kultur, Redaktion Hörspiel / Klangkunst commissioned the piece for Elektroakustischer Salon: Art’s Birthday 2014, which was performed live at Berghain, Berlin, on Friday 17th January 2014. With thanks to Marcus Gammel.
Buy Jana Winderen "Out of Range" [WAV] in the TouchShop
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The previous Touch NewsLetter can be found here.