Friday, July 15, 2011

Multi-focal music

The process of composing for (or within) Children's Games has been fragmented into multiple overlapping layers. 1) The entirety of the video soundtrack is being considered as a composition - including location recordings, vocal performances, foley sounds and music. 2) The chorus will perform vocal works, interacting with the video sound and occasionally on their own. 3) A trio of violin/viola/synthesizer will play music composed and led by Matt Carlson. These pieces will be mostly separate from the chorus, but will be associated with scenes or sections in the video. 4) The electroacoustic band, Crippled Athlete, will emerge in the third act and replace the other elements.
Each of these musical approaches has a different texture and approach. Each is being considered both separately and together. Crippled Athlete has been for me the newest and most challenging mode, as we've de- and re-constructed the material several times over the last year. As a trio playing computer, keyboard, lap steel, vocals, drums and effects, we've been finding a balance as collaborators between composition and improvisation. We've been developing mnemonic "mind movies" (see previous entry) to guide aesthetic choices, graphic/verbal scores and games... and most importantly repetition and improvisation, as a way to solidify tracks, attempting to give each a specific mood and structure.
Responding to the songs as they develop, we will create costumes, gestures and video projections. Here is our most recent recording, from yesterday's practice - the last of seven takes:

Northern Lights by Seth Nehil

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