DISContact! (2 × CD) Track listing detail

Nocturne (White Streak on Film)

Mara Zibens

  • Duration: 2:51

This excerpt from a work-in-progress involves the juxtaposition of motifs from earlier compositions, and features an improvised aria by mezzo-soprano Brenda Archer.

Flat Water

Gayle Young

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 2:52

The title refers to a style (or preference) of canoeists who choose lakes or other non-flowing bodies of water, in contrast to the “white water” of rivers. The sounds were recorded in September, 1992, and edited with the assistance of Randy Smith using Sound Tools.

Le jardin des larmes rouillés

Wes RD Wraggett

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 2:58

In the dark depths, tears-rememberance gone. Dedicated to Francis Dhomont.

A Ward of the Government

EC Woodley

  • Duration: 2:43

A Ward Of The Government was assembled using material recorded by Pamela Harris in 1973 and other material.


Pascale Trudel

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 2:14

A mysterious creature appears to be flying outside the studio’s window. A broken machine suddenly starts running again and I can go on with my work. After many difficult transmutations, the first breath of an unknown world is heard.

Song of Songs, 3: Evening

Barry Truax

  • Duration: 2:57

Evening is the third movement of Song of Songs which is based on texts from the Song of Solomon. Readings of these texts by Norbert Ruebsaat and Thecla Schiphorst are heard along with the voice of a monk from SS Annunziata, a monastery in Amelia, Italy, plus recordings of a crackling fire made by Robert MacNevin for the World Soundscape Project tape collection. All sounds are processed with techniques of granulation to stretch and harmonize them such that their lyrical content is brought out. The full performance version of the work will include Lawrence Cherney playing English horn and oboe d’amore and computer graphic images by Theo Goldberg.

Poland is not yet lost

Paul Steenhuisen

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 1:08
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

This trans-avant-garde vignette is #1 in a series sonically translating the appropriated iconography of various painters — in this case, Anselm Kiefer. The 2-track original was aged and charred on a NeXT computer, re-recorded with a Calrec Soundfield (MK IV) microphone, then re-NeXT-ified.

Neanderthals in a phone booth

Fred Semeniuk

  • Duration: 2:49

Neanderthals in a phone booth was realized in his studio at home and at the University of Calgary electronic music studio using a real-time recording of the AGT message which comes on if you leave the phone off the hook for too long. This message was digitized using the Macintosh system. Opcode’s Studio Vision and Digidesign software orchestrated the system. Flange, chorus and echo sweetening were used sparingly. The Neanderthal’s voice is a sample from Sample Cell but lengthened in duration. Letting it loop with different durations gives an echo-like fade away of the sound file. Do not play this piece backward.

A Soundwalk in the Rain of St John’s, NFLD

Claude Schryer

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:00

sound Schryer radio producer North Montréal Letter Inter GEMS founding empreintes director DIGITALes composer Claude CEC Bay Banff Arts artistic artist administrator ACREQ July 2nd, 1992, at 2.20pm, St John’s, Newfoundland. I am a radio artist in residence at Sound Symposium 6. I have a radio program to prepare. I walk, listen and think out loudä A Soundwalk in the Rain of St. John’s, NFLD was broadcast for the first time on July 2nd, 1992 at 3.03pm on CHMR-FM, at Memorial University, St. John’s. Special thanks to Don Wherry and Kathy Clark and to my fellow radio artists Dan Lander and Christof Migone.


Denis Saindon

  • Duration: 2:59

Pentacle, for MIDI keyboard controlling a sampler and a Proteus/2 synthesizer, expresses the symbolics of the number 5. The symbol of the Word made flesh. Based on the structure of the pentagram, this music tells of the journey of human fulfilment. This electroacoustic music was conceived to be played completely live by a MIDI controller with keyboard. This excerpt is taken from the stereo recording of the version read by sequencer.


Stéphane Roy

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 2:56
  • Instrumentation: guitar and stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Arturo Parra, with support from the CCA

I worked out the initial ideas for this work with the firm intention of producing a mixed music based on compositional processes which draw closely from acousmatic music. The search into new articulations, timbres and styles possessing distinctive morphologies, which characterizes my own approach to electroacoustic processing of the instrument, is the outcome of exploratory work in close collaboration with the performer. Imitation between an acoustic and an electronic source is the basis of this process.

The acoustic and electronic components of Mimetismo call out to and mimic each other, at times becoming one, within a sound material in constant evolution. The guitar abandons its traditional role as soloist: its timbre merges with the electronic materials. Homophony, homorhythm, and above all the similarity of the timbres blends the sonority of the instrument into that of the tape. The usual predominance of pitch is replaced by variations of intensity and of harmonic spectrum which give to the instrumental writing an extraordinary and unpredictable character. An adequate amplification of the instrument allows for the exploration of new guitaristic utterances.

Mimetismo is the result of a genuine collaboration between a performer and a composer. The traditional role of interpreter, handed down to the performer, needs in this case to be redefined. In effect, Arturo Parra contributed to the realization of the work by his exploration of new instrumental sonorities during improvisation sequences guided by verbal instructions. This process allowed him to generate, throughout the compositional process, a palette of rich and subtle sonorities from which I chose in accordance with my creative plans.

The electronic materials of Mimetismo were generated with the assistance of the SYTER system during a period of work at the Groupe de recherches musicales (GRM) in Paris, as well as at the composer’s studio; the work was completed in the studios of the Faculty of Music of the Université de Montréal. Mimetismo, a mixed work, composed with the collaboration of guitarist Arturo Parra, was commissioned by the latter with support from the Canada Council [for the Arts] (CCA). Mimetismo received First Prize in the 14th International Luigi Russolo Competition (Varese, Italy, 1992) as well as a Mention at the Prix Ars Electronica competition (Linz, Austria, 1992). Mimetismo was included, in 1993, on the compact disc Presence One (DIV 2) produced by Divided (Chicago, USA).


Signal Hill

Robert J Rosen

  • Duration: 2:52

Signal Hill was inspired by sound walks in the high winds on Signal Hill, Newfoundland at the time of the fisheries’ closure. Airplane credit: Claude Schryer.

Twisted Mirror, Shattered Dream

Bob Pritchard

  • Duration: 1:38

Remnants of impressions, rags of emotions, a harshness of experience. Onamatopoetic feelingsä Twisted Mirror, Shattered Dream was composed on a NeXT computer in the UBC Computer Music Studio using SoundWorks and Csound for recording, synthesis, processing, and re-processing.

Qui suis-je?

Claire Piché

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 2:01

Qui suis-je? is an enigmatic electro-acoustic clip, based on a totally fictional scenario. A man sentenced to death is led from the cell of an old underground prison to the public square where he is to be executed.

Victories Over Us

Jamie Philp

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 3:04

This is an excerpt from a composition for an installation presented at the 1991 Works Festival with Modern Dance Artist Brian Webb and visual artist Blair Brennan. The work started as improvisations using Laurie Spiegle’s Music Mouse and MIDI Paint. I used many sources of inspiration for the harmonic component: sound chords, mystic chords, quartal harmony and ethnic scales. On top of these short improvisations I built up parts on a variety of instruments including electric guitar, nose flutes, voice and zube tube, which added to the human quality of the piece. The text portions were selected from Evangelist surmons taken out of context. The work received an ARIA (Alberta Recording Industry Association) award in 1992.

Electric Interlude

Chris Meloche

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:01

Composed and recorded specifically for DISContact!, in October 1992 at Rough Cut Studio, London (Ontario). Premiere: Artcite, Windsor (Ontario), November 27th, 1992.


  • November 27, 1992, Concert, Artcite, Windsor (Ontario, Canada)

Convergence Radio

Robert Normandeau, David Olds, Hildegard Westerkamp

  • Year of composition: 1989
  • Duration: 27:32
  • Form: radiophonic documentary
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium

Excerpts from Four Radio Reports on the 1989 CEC Electroacoustic Days, >convergence< at The Banff Centre for the Arts, Alberta.

These radio programs were realized with the assistance of the Media Arts Service of the Canada Council, the Music Gallery (Toronto) and The Banff Centre for the Arts. Claude Schryer was artistic coordinator of the CEC Electroacoustic Days, >convergence<. The four-part radio series (2 in French, 2 in English) is available on cassette from the Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC).

Two Minute Warning

David Lindsay

  • Duration: 1:52

Today’s commercial synthesizers and computer music instruments are capable of a wide variety of sound collages at the touch of a key. Some animate classic electronic images, while others slice with digital perfection. This piece uses factory and composed sounds to reclaim the dynamics of earlier electroacoustic music and merge it with modern digital sound painting.


Daniel Leduc

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 0:48

For this DISContact! disk, I prepared, directly from St-Lambert, a Contact! clip quite in the outskirts. Enjoy!

Virtual Reality: The First Swim

Dan Lander

  • Duration: 2:59

My first experience of (or in) virtual reality was Robert McFadden’s Picture Yourself in Fiction which was produced as part of The Banff Centre’s Art and Virtual Environments project. Speaking into a microphone as I worked my way through the program, I later gained access to my verbal responses via digital audio editing. Virtual Reality: The First Swim was produced at EARS Studio, The Banff Centre, utilizing the Soundtools digital editing program.


Frank Koustrup

  • Duration: 2:55

In 1985, a man ordered a Frosty from a Wendy’s drive-thru window. Frank was there — with a tape recorder.


David Keane

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 2:52
  • Instrumentation: bass trombone and fixed medium

In Wervelwind — Flemish for “whirlwind” — the trombonist performs while continuously rotating, the shifting direction and reflection generating a powerful effect. This excerpt is from a recording in preparation for a CD of five works for solo wind instrument and electronics [QUM, release: March, 1993]. The rotation was captured by a single microphone and re-stereoized using the Focal Point 3-D sound process.


John Kamevaar

  • Duration: 2:03

The title of this work is inspired by Spinoza’s famous statement: Omnes determinatio negatio est. (Every determination is a negation.) The work is the result of a “patch” programmed on an Ensoniq EPS 16+ sampler. Various processes, including random modulation of frequency and loop position, are applied to a short sample of microphone feedback effecting a combination of the aleatoric with a certain degree of predictability. Any instance of the same keypress will initiate a new sequence of events.

Last Night

Bentley Jarvis

  • Duration: 2:47

Last Night is an excerpt from a work in progress. It was written using Cakewalk software controling a Turtle Beach Multisound card, TX7, CZ101, Arp Avatar, Oberheim 0B1, MPU101, DVP1, SPX90, Electro-Harmonix Vocoder, and hand crafted analog modules.

Night-flowering… not even sand — II

James Harley

  • Year of composition: 1990
  • Duration: 2:55
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Night-flowering… not even sand-II was composed in the EMS of McGill University using csound synthesis software and the composer’s chaotics compositional software. The texture of the music is “granular” and explores the fascinating world of 31 tone equal temperament. The inspiration comes from a visit to sand dunes in the Arabian Desert, and the title is taken from the poetry of Thomas Merton.

La ville machine

Gilles Gobeil / Lyette Limoges

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:06
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: ACREQ, with support from the CCA

“When the act is committed, when the threat is carried out, reason dictates the impossible. They believed it, all of them.” La ville machine (The Machine City) is an electroacoustic drama on the subject of sound ecology.


La ville machine was produced at the composer’s studio. It was presented at the 7e Printemps électroacoustique de Montréal during the radio program Sons d’esprit on CKUT FM in Montréal. It was also presented in concert on June 20, 1992 at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal. La ville machine was commissioned by the Association pour la création et la recherche électroacoustiques du Québec (ACREQ) with support from the Canada Council [for the Arts] (CCA). Thanks to Hélène Mondoux and François Godin (narration) and to the children of the École nouvelle Querbes in the city of Outremont. In 1993, La ville machine was awarded the Grand Prize at the competition of the SOCAN (the Canadian preforming right society).


  • June 18, 1992, Concert, CKUT FM, Montréal (Québec)


David Eagle

  • Duration: 3:03
  • Instrumentation: Guzheng (Chinese zither) and fixed medium
  • Commission: Zhang Yan with support from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts

“mysterious strings” / plucked strings on an ancient instrument / a sound emerging from the distant past / resonating through the centuries / enduring and timeless / a witness to the present.

Hsüan was commissioned by Zhang Yan with financial assistance provided by the Alberta Foundation for the Arts. The tape part was realized at the University of Calgary Electroacoustic Music Studio using a Macintosh IIcx computer with SampleCell.

Physics of Seduction. Invocation #2

Paul Dolden

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 3:03
  • Instrumentation: harpsichord and stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Vivienne Spiteri, with support from the CCA

Speed creates pure objects. It is itself a pure object, since it cancels out the ground and territorial reference points, since it runs ahead of time to annul time itself, since it moves more quickly than its own cause and obliterates that cause by outstripping it. Speed is the triumph of effect over cause, the triumph of instantaneity over time as depth, the triumph of the surface and pure objectality over the profundity of desire. Speed creates a space of initiation which may be lethal; its only rule is to leave no trace behind. Triumph of forgetting over memory, an uncultivated amnesic intoxication.

The tape portion of Physics of Seduction. Invocation #2 was produced at the composer’s studio in 1991. It was commissioned by Vivienne Spiteri with assistance from the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA). The work was premiered by Vivienne Spiteri on August 1, 1992 at the NEMO festival in Aarhus (Denmark). Physics of Seduction. Invocation #2 was recorded by Vivienne Spiteri for the compact disc comme si l’hydrogène… the desert speaks on J&W Records (J&W 931).



… the recorded harpsichord part was realized in the DIEM studio in Aarhus (Denmark) in 1992. The final mix of the tape and live part was done in the composer’s studio in 1993.

Studio de nuit

Francis Dhomont

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:00
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Here we surprise the acousmotrope (by analogy with the heliotrope, that which turns toward hearing), engaged in his rituals and his creations, in a half-real, half-dreamed moment of nocturnal composition for Figures de la nuit / Faces of the Night, a work for radio commissioned by David Olds for the program Transfigured Night, on CKLN-FM in Toronto.

Along with the voice of the artist, we hear (in order of vocal appearance) those of Laurie Radford, Pierre Daboval, Justice Olsson, Marie Pelletier, Jean-François Denis, and Pierre Louet.

[English translation: Tom Carter]

Studio de nuit (Studio at Night) was realized at the composer’s studio in 1992 and premiered on 2 September 1995 as part of the Festival international d’art acousmatique Futura (Crest, France). Studio de nuit was recorded on the 1992 disc DISContact! 6.2 (CEC 92CD).


  • September 2, 1995, Futura 95: Acousma international 12, Chapelle des Cordeliers, Crest (Drôme, France)


Robert Del Buono

  • Duration: 2:51

Solarsystemless explores the journey of a voice attempting to establish contact with its beginnings.

Tesla’s Dream

Bruno Degazio

  • Duration: 2:59

Tesla’s Dream is an excerpt from the multimedia opera NT: The Man Who Invented the Twentieth Century. Tesla the great inventor, dreams of the universal benefits brought to humanity by electricity. He dreams of the harnessing of Niagara and other monsters of nature. He foresees a worldwide electrical communication system bringing people together into a “global village.” He sees, in his dreams, the end of war and the universal happiness of mankind.


Yves Daoust

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 2:38
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Without wanting to “pastiche” the Gilles Tremblay style, I searched for a “colour” to evoke the brillant and sparkling side of his writing. A volley of bells, extracted from a preceding work (Résonances, created at GMEB, in January, 1992) supplied me with the material and the structural idea. The work begins with the realistic sound of Angelus sounding at the Notre-Dame of Montréal church. This bell, for better or for worse, integrates with the ambient noise of an important artery of the city, and will little by little disappear into the sonic atmosphere and transform itself into a musical “halleluia.”

This miniature was premiered on October 27, 1992 during a concert dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the composer.


  • October 27, 1992, Concert, Montréal (Québec)

Zero and One: Stations and Directions

Darren Copeland

  • Year of composition: 1992
  • Duration: 3:13

Sources found here and there in someone else’s catalogue. / Sources modified. / And made anew. Joseph Cornell: New Yorker, surrealist, avid collector of nostalgic oddities, and maker of strange, illuminous and spacious worlds that actually take up as much room as a cupboard or jewellery box. His approach to collage serves as an inspirational guidepost for my work these last couple of years. I am not exactly sure how this is so, but my experience suggests to me that it might have something to do with a special intuitive pull to the materials that are brought into play. Perhaps along the lines of always remembering to leave space for dreaming one’s way through the task at hand.

It’s about time

Gustav Ciamaga

  • Year of composition: 1989
  • Duration: 1:45

It’s about time was composed a few years ago and reworked in 1992 as an aural example for a public lecture on algorithmic composition. The shape of the piece is a simple rondo form (ABACA) where B is the theme and all other sections are algorithmic variations.


Ned Bouhalassa

  • Year of composition: 1992, 93
  • Duration: 3:04
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
To my love Brenda

Attraction consists of various representations of the energy that is built up and released in many types of attractions (gravity, one body for another, many bodies for one, the composer’s for his-her sonic materials, the listener’s for the materials…). I have striven to produce a work that continuously challenges the ear and the intellect by using non-recurring sound environments and complex gestures, resembling those found in the work of contemporary visual artists.

As is the case with most of my works, Attraction contains many sound objects that started out as recordings of acoustic sources and were subsequently transformed using digital processing and traditional musique concrète techniques. In addition I created complex synthesizer patches by combining ‘old’ (analog) and ‘new’ (digital) technologies.

Attraction was realized at the studios of Concordia University and various personal studios. This piece could not have come to be without the voice of Edgard-Émile Hudon, and the help of Gregory Fine, Pierre De Gagné, Frédéric Roverselli and Claude Schryer. Attraction was premiered in the Fall of 1992 at Concordia University and was awarded 3rd Prize — solo tape category — of the 15th Luigi Russolo International Competition (Varèse, Italy, 1993).


  • November 11, 1992, Concert, Salle de concert — Université Concordia, Montréal (Québec)



Egils Bebris

  • Duration: 2:55

Immersion is an excerpt from A Mercurial Sea of Voices Fluttering, a work which metaphorically suggests the idea that one has fallen in the river and is being swept downstream into the ocean. All the sound materials are derived from the human voice by means of digital sampling and signal processing.


Sergio Barroso

  • Year of composition: 1990
  • Duration: 2:36
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Commission: Flores Chaviano, with support from the CCA

Flamenco music has been around my ears since my childhood in Havana, on the radio, on recordings, the readings and plays of Garcia Lorca, and later on during my visits to Andalusía. The place where Flamenco music is performed is usually called Tablao. The piece contains the essence of different instrumental elements of that music in a dismembered way.

Tablao exists in two versions, for tape and for guitar and tape. In the latter the solo part plays the role of one member of the instrumental ensemble as well as that of the cantaor (Spanish for flamenco music singer) who in the middle section evokes elements of Cuban street vendor music rooted in Spanish traditions. The tape part mostly uses microtonal settings of FM synthesis sounds I programed and performed with a DX-7IIFD(E!) and a TX-802 synthesizers.

Tablao was realized in the Fall of 1991 at the Laboratorio de Informática y Electrónica Musical (LIEM) from the Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid (Spain) where I was invited to work with my old friend guitarist Flores Chaviano. The piece was completed at Ireme Studio in Vancouver (British Columbia, Canada). It was commissioned by Flores Chaviano with support from the Canada Council [for the Arts] (CCA) and premiered by him in Madrid in February, 1992. The Canadian premiere was presented by Montréal-based Colombian guitarist Arturo Parra in 1994 in Montréal.


  • February 1992, Premiere of the mixed version: Flores Chaviano, guitar • Concert, Madrid (Spain)

Perspectives Radio

Wende Bartley, Claude Schryer, Philip Szporer

  • Year of composition: 1991
  • Duration: 21:41
  • Form: radiophonic documentary
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium

Excerpts from Six Radio Reports on the 3rd CEC Electroacoustic Days 1991, perspectives, at Concordia University, Montréal.

These radio programs were realized with the assistance of the Media Arts Service of the Canada Council, the Department of Music of Concordia University (Montréal), the Music Gallery (Toronto) and The Banff Centre for the Arts. Kevin Austin was Artistic Director of perspectives. The six-part radio series (2 in French, 4 in English) is available on cassette from the Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC).

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