sound design related to liveness

This is a posting that has been influenced by the last few days at STEIM. Briefly, I wanted to reflect on whether I had been using a proper setup with regards to a controller, and whether my musical result has somehow fitted in with STEIM’s own attitude. Talking about music, particularly electric guitarists with Frank, I started to realise the importance of personalising a style that also is resultant of continual crafting of resources used. We discussed what comes about with not modifying and extending a performance setup, but actually ‘really knowing’ the setup’s ingredients regardless of the technical complexity of the setup. So in my case I am opting to still use what I think of as very low-level controls, such as a series of knobs and pedals which will manipulate spectral processing in Max. I am working on a composition that uses recorded instrumental sound sources(percussion and sax). My last few performances were with laptop and drummer, so now I would like to extend to the ‘instrumentalist’(in this case drummer), the use of pedals, that will add to the internal dialogue between the laptop during performance. More importantly is the expansion of sonic range and ‘orchestration’ of the range. I question myself lately on why I will record sax and percussion sounds, also processing further for live use, but then only to perform with a different player using different sounds. In considering the issue of liveness, I am simply a hybrid. I am choosing to allow the player the opportunity to modify a continuous fixed track with pedals, and also interject with the triggering of fft objects within my patch. From the perspective of individual presence during play, I think that the performance dialogue is enhanced by furthering the sonic options in this manor of almost augmenting the resources for the percussionist. As far as the representation of sax and other percussion sounds that will be manipulated during the composition, I think it comes down to how I will take care with the imposed morphologies being used. One detail that relates directly to liveness-sound design connection, is how the balance of fixed and variable morphology is managed for both laptop and instrumental performer.

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