Posted on by bwright | Posted in So Forth

Buchla Synthesizer and Ableton on computer

Buchla Synthesizer and Ableton on computer

July 7, 2012

River to River Festival

Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts

The Source of Uncertainty II with Morton Subotnick

What a night.  I was so pleased to hear both historical and new music by Subotnick as well as a piece by Richard Lainhart.  I heard Lainhart live at a little club in Brooklyn awhile back and was blown away; then shocked and saddened to hear of his untimely passing.  Very sad.  Lainhart’s “Orchestra of the Damned” is a quadrophonic surround tape-work for the Buchla 200e. It was played in a darkened theater and was full of surging sounds and textures into which, after a few minutes, I found myself fully immersed. The great sound system at the venue made it easy to kick back and listen. Subotnick then took the stage performing “Silver Apples of the Moon” and a premiere performance of “Song and Dance” with excellent live visuals by Sue C.  ”Silver Apples” created in 1967 and, as noted, was the first large-scale  composition creating for the disc medium and home stereo system.  Thanks, Mort. We also heard these in quadrophonic sound which was glorious.  In “Song and Dance,” which was fully improvised in real time, Subotnick used the computer (Ableton) to multiply the power of the 200e. I found this to be not only beautiful but also very sophisticated. The program notes say, “Together the works in the program realize the potential of the analog synthesizer as a performative instrument for the digital age.” Hooray. NYTimes review: