Re: [rumori] curve of sound innovation

From: Don Joyce (
Date: Fri Mar 16 2001 - 22:44:03 PST

I would have to hear the Daxophone (and would like to!) to tell you if it's
any kind of new sound, but I would bet it's one of the oldest sounds in
music's world being vibrating string on wood(?) And how old is the
Daxophone? Are you calling it a NEW instrument?

The elephants are playing traditional instruments and can make no "new"
elephant sounds with them. I am also willing to confine my argument to
human music...

After 40 years of digitized sound manipulation, I believe we've pretty much
made computers make every variety of sound which digitization will ever
provide in any elemental way. (Again, we are dealing only with the sound
qualities of elements, not all the infinite varieties of untried music that
might be made with them.)

I can see my challenge is a bit impractical since I will require audio
examples to make a judgement as to whether it's a new sound to music.


>>From: Don Joyce <>
>>Prove this statement dude.
>>I can't prove a negative. Simply give me a "brand new" sonic element in
>>music, or a procedure to make it, and I will tell you where and when it has
>>occured in music BEFORE now as a precedent in the history of music.
>I'll bite:
>By "sonic element" are you referring to sound generation? Or compositional
>Daxophone - a specifically shaped piece of wood played off the edge of a
>table with a bow. It sounds remarkably like altered vocal samples. It's one
>of Hans Reichel's main instruments.
>Circuit-bent instruments
>Thai Elephant Orchestra
>Personal home computer recording & CD production - I believe this really has
>an effect on how music is made today. For example, the visual interface, and
>the ability to click and drag sounds into a linear pattern that can be
>played. Sure, there was already tape splicing and digital samplers, but the
>popularity of programs like ACID are changing the way people think about
>music production.
>The digital effects that have appeared recently (within the last 10 years)
>within digital composition programs. Bit Decimation and Granular Synthesis,
>for example.
>I've heard lots of people say that "everything that can be done has been
>done," and I simply don't buy it. It's like saying, "Every scientific fact
>to be discovered about the Earth has already been discovered," when we're
>still in the midst of learning all sorts of new stuff!
>You can say that all frequencies of sound within the human range of hearing
>have been reached, and I'll believe you. You can even say that all musical
>combinations of notes in the harmonic series have been played before, and
>I'll buy that. There is so much more to music than raw notes though.
>Compositional technique (how we come to that pattern of notes),
>instrumentation/sound generation, technology (including sampling), intent,
>and dynamic range all play a large part in how we hear music, and I can't
>believe that all those avenues have been previously exploited.
>If they have, then we might as well all stop right now.
>I would argue that you, Don Joyce, have added a new element to the world of
>music with both Over the Edge and Negativland, and that several people on
>this list who have been inspired by you have gone on to create their own
>unique forms in the world of sampled music.
>Matt Davignon
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