The Melting Voice Through Mazes Running

Paul Dolden

The Melting Voice Through Mazes Running

  • Paul Dolden
  • Year of composition: 1984
  • Duration: 20:59
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

The composition derives its overall direction from the title, which possible evokes visions of travelling through a maze, a maze which has had different meaning throughout time; the most famous being the Greek myth of Daedalus’ Labrynth. Another example is the outdoor mazes in England which were used by Church patrons to walk around on their knees as a symbolic journey. In both cases, the maze acts as a social ritual in which elements of danger and suspense are experienced. The possibility of freedom is only through escaping the maze.

The title also refers to the dynamic relationship that exists between the electronic and acoustic sound sources. Whereas the computer tracks tend to act as a constant maze of rhythm, the acoustic sounds exhibit a more sustained and often voice-like quality.

The overall development of the composition is based on the escalation of intensity, and is reflected in the pacing of the music; for example, the increasing density of material — the latter part of the work uses on average 330 notes per second — and the change in sound from harmonic to inharmonic.

The composidon was done using the facilities at Simon Fraser University including the POD computer music system and the Sonic Research Studio. All computer sounds and electronic manipulation realized by Paul Dolden.