Metafonie – 50 anni di musica elettroacustica (2 × DVD-Video) Track listing detail

Souffle d’un petit Dieu distrait

Beatriz Ferreyra

  • Year of composition: 1988, 97
  • Duration: 13:00
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium
  • Commission: GMEB
  • ISWC: T0030634651
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À Marie-Louise Danset

Parmi les Dieux, témoins de la Création de l’Univers par le Souffle Créateur de Brahma, se trouvait un petit Dieu habitant la Lune. Un jour après sa sieste, pas très réveillé encore, la conscience flottant au gré de sa distraction légendaire, il laissa échapper un soupir qui s’avéra être le Souffle Créateur dont sont porteurs tous les Dieux, grands et petits. À sa grande surprise, prit naissance lentement, l’essence même de tous les éléments dans leur modalité potentielle, c’est à dire non encore manifestée, d’un minuscule univers proportionné à sa taille, évidemment. Sa frousse se fit panique quand le non-manifesté parvient soudain à la limite du manifesté. Là, devant l’énormité de sa distraction (car il savait, heureusement! que la création d’un monde implique une totale conscience et une totale responsabilité qu’il était incapable d’assumer), il inspira aussi vite qu’il put - aussi vite que l’énergie en mouvement le lui permettait - toute cette essence élémentaire jusqu’à la faire disparaître. Ouf!!!

Après cette étourderie, il alla prendre des vacances chez son oncle Saturne… pour qu’il lui mette un peu de plomb dans la tête. Commande de l’IMEB.

6 studi. Dalla muta distesa delle cose…

Agostino Di Scipio

  • Year of composition: 1995-97
  • Instrumentation: piano and processing


Ivan Fedele

  • Year of composition: 1999
  • Duration: 12:50
  • Instrumentation: viola and processing

Surface Tension

Jonty Harrison

  • Year of composition: 1996
  • Duration: 13:01
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • Commission: IMEB
  • ISWC: T9247804111

Strictly speaking, surface tension is the phenomenon exhibited by liquids which permits heavy objects to float and enables some insects to ‘walk on water.’ My Surface Tension, however, is based not on water sounds but on dry, brittle sound material derived, quite literally, from rubbish. This paradox is only one of several through and around which this piece weaves a meandering path: it utilizes sounds from packing materials (rather than from what is packaged) — styrofoam, polyethylene sheets and bubble-wrap — ironically, and most significantly, the packaging from a supposedly environmentally-friendly refrigerator; it attempts to reveal ‘beauty’ in what is normally thrown away without a second thought; it tries to find an organic sonic logic from predominantly inorganic material sources; it assembles these according to their ‘sonic surface’ (the particular features of the individual sound objects), yet by doing so creates a musical flow which requires one to listen ‘inside’ the sound, just ‘below’ the surface, getting ‘under the skin’ of the sources’ generally similar natures.


Surface Tension was realized in the Charybde and Circé studios of the Institut international de musique électroacoustique de Bourges (IMEB, France), and in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of the University of Birmingham (UK) and premiered on May 30, 1997 at Palais Jacques-Cœur during the Synthèse Festival (Bourges, France). The piece was commissioned by the Institut international de musique électroacoustique de Bourges (IMEB, France)


  • May 30, 1997, Synthèse 1997: Concert, Palais Jacques-Cœur, Bourges (Cher, France)


Adolfo Núñez

  • Year of composition: 1999
  • Duration: 10:40
  • Instrumentation: clarinet and stereo fixed medium


Åke Parmerud

  • Year of composition: 1988
  • Duration: 11:46
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • Commission: Sveriges Radio
  • ISWC: T9118583974

The basic structure of Stringquartett (Stråkkvartett; String Quartet) is derived from the number 4. Four players, four types of playing techniques, four layers of velocity, four temperaments, etc. As one of the instrumental combinations that has proven to be a real ‘survivor’ through music history, the string quartet has fascinated me since a long time. Overwhelmed by the number of compositions created for some 300 years I realized that there was little or nothing I could do to create anything even remotely resembeling true ‘originality’ in the sense of bringing new ideas to the form. However, moving the whole concept to another platform gave me the inspiration needed to unfold some visions of how to treat the formal and aural aspects of this specific string combination. Today Stringquartett, as a tape composition, may be regarded as a bit ‘crude,’ based as it is on a sampling technology which at the time was state of the art, but today may be wiewed as ‘antique.’ The structure and energy of the piece still gives it an edge that I like and the conceptual side of transforming the purety of one form into an equal counterpart, renders the piece a quality that last beyond the facts of its ‘instrumental’ shortcomings. The late Swedish poet/author Erik Bäckman allowed me to appear in one of his books as “the composer who kept a string quartet in his pocket.”

Stringquartett was realized in 1988 at the composer’s studio and premiered on June 4, 1989 at the Skinnskatteberg Festival. It was commissioned by Sveriges Radio — the Swedish radio. Stringquartett received an Honorable Mention at the Prix Ars Electronica (Linz, Austria, 1990).


  • June 4, 1989, Skinnskatteberg Festival, Skinnskatteberg (Sweden)


The Vox Cycle, 5: Vox 5

Trevor Wishart

  • Year of composition: 1979-86
  • Duration: 5:42
  • Instrumentation: 4-channel fixed medium
  • Commission: IRCAM

This is the only entirely electroacoustic piece in The Vox Cycle, and presents the image of a single supervoice located at front centre stage, whose utterances metamorphose into natural events—the sounds of crowds, bells, bees and other creatures, and less specific sound events—poetic images of the creation and destruction of the world contained within one all-enveloping vocal utterance (the ‘Voice of Shiva’). This piece was submitted as a project to IRCAM in 1979-80 but, due to a complete overhaul of their hardware environment, could not be fully realized until 1986. The piece was made using computer programs I wrote to manipulate sound-analysis data obtained from Mark Dolson’s Phase Vocoder program. These programs permitted the spectra of vocal sounds to be stretched (making them bell-like) or interpolated with the spectra of natural events. The original four-channel version makes special use of sound spatialisation so that natural events appear to be physically ejected from the mouth at front centre stage, circling and scattering around the space of the auditorium to converge again at front centre stage for the start of a new syllable.

[source: Réseaux des arts médiatiques]

Vox 5 was commissioned by IRCAM and premiered in the Ina-GRM Cycle Acousmatique at the Radio France Studios in May 1987. I would particularly like to thank Thierry Lancino, Etienne Bultingaire and the many other people at IRCAM who helped me in the realisation of this piece. Also the Ralph Vaughan Williams Trust and the Arts Council of Great Britain for their financial support during the preparatory stages of the project.


About this recording

Stereophonic version realized from the 4-channel original.

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