Anthony Moore

T33.21 Anthony Moore – ‘CSound & Saz’

CD – 1 track – 30:37

Release date: Friday 2nd December 2022

Available to order now

Track listing:

1. CSound & Saz

Photography & design by Jon Wozencroft

Anthony Moore (b. August 1948) is a composer/musician, now based in the UK, formerly professor in Cologne for sound art and music working on the social and technical history of sound. He operates across many genres; ambient drone, musique concrète, electroacoustic, songwriting and immersive, multi-channel sound installations. He continues to compose, perform and release work on various labels such as Touch, Drag City (Chicago), P-Vine (Tokyo) and others.

Anthony Moore recently conducted a lengthy interview with Julian Cowley for The Wire, which appeared in their October ’22 edition in the form of a 6 page feature length article.

‘Touch.40 live at Iklectik’.

“I received an invitation to perform at the 40th anniversary gathering, June 2022. Previous works for the label, Arithmetic in the Dark and Isoladrone2020  illuminated the landing strip for a new work. It should be continuous – a further play on moving and remaining. I wanted to balance the digital output of a CSound orchestra with an analogue instrument and chose the Turkish saz, a sound I’ve loved and lived with for the last 6 decades. I prepared the ground for the live performance with a graphical interface for CSound and an e-bow for the Saz (along with some short pre-recordings of picking and strumming). Then, a few days before the concert, I got Covid. On the suggestion of Jon and Mike I recorded a live performance-for-one, (myself at home) which was played back at Iklectik. Unedited, unchanged, here it is.” (amoore st leonards 220807)

Three pairs of thin, wire strings on the Turkish saz are struck, and the resulting sound is harmonised, filtered and then sustained in an infinite but gradually shifting chord of harmonics. In addition, an ebow is used to excite the strings in realtime. This sound is natural, untreated, and adds layers to the sustained chord. Subsequently, two Csound programmes running in parallel are ‘fed’ the natural sound of the saz and the output is heavily effected with filters, resonators, vocoders etc. These sonic gestures are allowed to take over as the original chord fades to leave the more transparent sounds of the Csound outputs. The organum returns with much more warm, low end. The saz transformations thin out to leave a keening call. And finally the last minutes are filled with a deep chord which fades to silence.


Nieuwe Noten (NL):

Aan het begin van ‘Csound + Saz’ slaat Anthony Moore zijn saz aan, een snaarinstrument uit het Midden Oosten en aansluitend volgt de drone. Veel meer klinkt er niet de eerste dertien minuten, dan deze bijzonder lang uitgesponnen klanknevel. Zo nu en dan slaat hij hooguit nog eens een snaar aan, om het geheel nog iets meer body te geven. Of zoals La Monte Young, de grondlegger van dit type muziek, waar iedereen die met drones werkt schatplichtig aan is, het uitdrukte: “Draw a straight line and follow it”. Pas voorbij die dertiende minuut verandert het stuk, dat in totaal iets meer dan een half uur duurt, wat van karakter, krijgt het wat meer gelaagdheid, iets dat zo rond de achttiende minuut nog een keer gebeurd, maar de drone blijft een constante. Drones waren in het westen halverwege de vorige eeuw overigens nieuw, iets dat geenszins het geval was in veel andere culturen. Waaronder die in het Midden Oosten. Dat Moore hier juist een saz kiest, is dan ook niet zo heel vreemd.

Alle albums zijn te beluisteren via Bandcamp en daar ook te koop. [Ben]

Tone 66 Anthony Moore – ‘Arithmetic in the Dark’

Download LP – 10 tracks

You can listen to this album here

Track listing:

01. Switched
02. Particulates
03. Synthi AKS waves
04. Spinturn
05. Entangled
06. A chime of psalters
07. Hoedown
08. The psaltery sea
09. A likely outcome
10. Arithmetic in the dark

I like to imagine a time and place where arithmetic is done in a natural way by simply experiencing the unique possibility offered by sound, that of distinguishing simultaneous differences; the non-displacing waves of either AND both. Despite the observations of cool cats like Bill Sethares on the subjective nature of the octave´s perception, one fact remains  unfailingly true. An octave is a doubling of frequency – the higher octave has exactly twice the number of vibrations per second than the lower. I am imagining a planet without the invention of writing, even of symbols and scratchings in the sand where, on hearing the sound of a child and an adult singing together, a listener is doing a multiplication by two in a mathematics without signs; arithmetic in the dark.

The album consists of a set of 10 works which focus on repetition and change. The pieces evolve mostly through the active perception of the listener. Saccades and oto-acoustic emissions are evidence that perception is far from passive reception. The transmitting ear determines much about what it takes in. [Anthony Moore, Arles, November 2018]

Artwork & photography by Jon Wozencroft


Touching Extremes:

In the liner notes, Anthony Moore – the co-author of one of my all-time favourite songs – talks of ‘the unique possibility offered by sound, that of distinguishing simultaneous differences’. In another section of his introduction to Arithmetic In The Dark, he states that ‘saccades and oto-acoustic emissions are evidence that perception is far from passive reception’. Not a truer word. ‘Passive reception’ is in fact an outcome of the disgraceful condition which isolates will-deprived people, as opposed to human specimens who need no external authority to decide how they should think, eat, vote and – in general – behave.

The question arises: are the aforementioned perceptive possibilities pursuable by everybody? As one observes the reaction of an average individual subjected to certain types of aural stimulus, or to a reiterative selection of sonic grains, the answer is an unmerciful ‘no’. Presumed evolved persons simply refuse to conform to substances that do not fit in their phobic requisites: repetition will upset them, whereas selected waveforms cause out-and-out interior disruption. Risible theories about healing vibrations – also known as ‘inevitably consonant placebo effect’ – are ceaselessly spewed around; needless to say, all of them entirely miss the point of what can’t be understood without being born in sound. For the latter is a gift, not something that can be taught or applied to miserably anthropocentric conceptions of ‘perfection’.

Still, in our residual hopes this album may act as a preliminary training for minds struggling against the quicksands of enforced formulation, in order to explore the realms of non-intellectual discernment. Its constitution merges intelligently designed resonant materials – including processed voice – with minimalistic expansions of sentience. Some of the traits are extremely soothing in their indisputable profundity; other episodes suggest alternative routes, fragmenting the mechanisms of apprehension while structuring the cerebral polyphony invoked by the composer. Two pieces featuring the psaltery as a primary source depict at best the correspondence between a vanishing self and a group of beneficial frequencies. Because when all is said and done, what we’re dealing with here is exactly that: a focused musician suggesting practicable paths to an enhanced cognizance.