of my favourites, among the pieces of my own making,
this is an unholy fusion of reverent church vocal
and organ music, displaced by satanic synths and
a phat beat. Saying that, I'm eager to remix it,
take some of the
squelch out of the beat. I'm still waiting to hear
back from Songs of Praise...
as a submission for a course on minimalist music,
this track draws on influences from Philip Glass
Steve Reich. Two foundations underpin the opus: the
first is a short melody, which is overlapped with
delays and and various integral tempos; the second
is a simple descending scale on strings akin to
Arvo Pärt. I particularly like the bit beginning
just after 4:10...
/ MINIMALISM / ROMANTIC
on the previous track's minimalist theme, this track
combines Pärt's tintinnabuli style
with a romantic narrative. The piece, which is best
played with the volume on '11', tells the story of
a small fishing vessel that sets sail
calm weather, only to fall victim to a storm, which
gains ferocity as the piece goes on. It was
performed live in Dublin in 2004, with David Adams
at the piano, before an increasingly-choppy 30ft
video seascape (see photo).
/ AMBIENT / MINIMALISM
goal of this exercise was to compose a piece of no
less than 12 minutes duration, which again encouraged
a voyage into minimalism. The music comprises a gradually
evolving texture of harmonies, synths, voices and
strings, with an underlying theme of infinity, introduced
by the whispered words, "To define recursion, we
must first define recursion"...
CLASSICAL / ROMANTIC
piece was a 'reimaging' of an earlier work of mine
This new approach was conducted using a sequencer,
rather than a tracker,
and uses professional orchestral and choral samples.
With the equivalent of a 75-piece orchestra (excluding
choir), the added realism brings significantly more
prescense to the offering.
nimmerlein's eve (reprise)
CLASSICAL / ROMANTIC
with "The Child", this former piece of
mine benefitted from a reversion utilising professional
samples and a sequencer. The new arrangement is more
of a classical take, but retains much of the original's
'traditional' flair, with the previous' rock beat has
been replaced for a more ethnic performance (e.g. tablas).
the haze (reprise)
CINEMATIC / ROCK
piece also drew on a previous work (see second
albeit sometimes loosely. The new take incorporates
live acoustic performances
on bass, guitar, piano and drums, and combines it with
synthesizers and sound effects. The piece addresses
criticisms, from magazine reviews, of the original
- and features the unique acoustics of Trinity's
School of Engineering foyer.
lost art of romance
CINEMATIC / AMBIENT
with only 5 audio files (samples) and the standard
(plugins excluded) of Sonic Foundary's Sound Forge
this was an assignment to produce a piece of music
with limited resources.
The samples included: a conveyor belt, a door closing,
an extract of percussion from a piece by Edgar Varese,
violin note and a sample of a far-eastern string instrument.
Far from the atonal / dissonant submission that was
probably expected from the students, I rebelled to
bring something that appealled more to my aesthetic.
this one for my Dad (for Father's Day no less), who
- like me - still remembers the classic
1977 hit by Didier
Marouani & Space with fondness. This
was one of the first ever outings for my tracker
used for the drum programming and bass, back when it was
still just an alpha version - but it still allowed me to
get the most from a sequencer and a tracker,
this assignment, rather than writing the music, I programmed
the synthesis engine. The MIDI file (sourced from the
Internet) was based on Orbital's remix of the theme
from the film, "The Saint". Using a programming
language, called CSound, the track employs
synthesis methods such as AM and FM, and also uses samples
to provide a percussion track.
was part of a community project a friend and I did
with the Women's Resource Centre in Ballymun, Dublin.
We gave the girls a mic and a MiniDisc recorder and
sent them out to record the sounds of their
which we then used to build a piece of
music (using trackers). First presented
at axis in
Dublin in 2004, the piece found its way onto BBC
Radio 4 NI
appeared as incidental music
in the BBC One drama series, 55 Degrees North.
sharp relief from the grittiness of the previous
track, this work was a simple exercise in working
on harmonic progressions and developing melodies
from harmonies (and vice versa).
exploration (stereo mix)
/ SURROUND SOUND
goal of this exercise was to "engage with surround
sound". The music simply combines the harmonies and
melodies of The
Grandfather Clock (above) with synthesized sounds
and drums, in a 5.1 mix. Though the stereo version
provided doesn't capture the original, the music
was not the point. One of the problems with 5.1 is
that it is not always easy for the listener to localise
a sound, without some kind of visual cue. Thus,
audio, each musical element appears
as a shape in a 3D video schematic of the space,
allowing the audience to see, as well as hear, the
sounds as they fly around*.
* at some point I'll try to upload the video to YouTube.