Anais Nin had a Side Gig
January 11, 2018 8:44 PM   Subscribe

She's the kind of artist who can't be bound to a single category. Anaïs Nin is our favorite breed of artist: the kind who just can’t be bound to a single era, movement, or category. Diarist? Definitely. Muse? To many, most notably American novelist Henry Miller. Yet her oeuvre spans a good portion of the 20th century, and includes everything from those notorious diaries (about bohemian Paris in the ‘30s, Miller, etc.), works of creative non-fiction, poetic erotica, and (drumroll) some seriously trippy electro music.

Bebe & Louis Barron were pioneers in digital music, and Anais Nin was one of the artists they worked with.
posted by MovableBookLady (8 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
She also held what where apparently WILD apartment parties in NYC in the 40s and they're credited with bringing lots of people together (Gore Vidal, Tennessee Williams and Truman Captiote reportedly first met each other at one of her to dos)
posted by The Whelk at 10:05 PM on January 11 [2 favorites]

Oh, the Forbidden Planet soundtrack people! This is a fascinating read.

Have to admit I assumed House of Incest was about the titular subject. It sounds more approachable now.

Notes listening to "Bells of Atlantis":
0:45 boy they like their ~10 Hz modulation.
1:15 it's interesting that the electronics are pretty timeless, while the speech is of its time (in elocution style)
4:45 is all this 10 Hz modulation intentional or did something happen to a tape
5:15 is this spring reverb that's on this? it doesn't sound springy. I don't think they had commercial plate reverbs at that point, this was 1952 and let's see, the EMT 150 was in 1957 and was large. wonder if the Barrons homebrewed something? well they could have used acoustic chamber reverb.
5:30 some Forbidden Planet soundtrack going on
6:45 did she say "the terror and joy of murders accomplished in science"? "in silence" maybe?
8:15 I could see the vocals sampled by Skinny Puppy for sure

-- I am really digging the next track, "The Monster Pursues". I hear more musical shape going on, possibly on the other track I didn't pick it up under the vocals which are absent here.
4:00 is such tasty sound sculpting
5:45 the end? I expected more of a big catastrophe and the monster catches me. I guess that was the 4:00 section and it was understated.
posted by away for regrooving at 1:11 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]

“the terror and joy of murders accomplished in science"? "

I would be sad if this was not the correct lyric.
posted by GenjiandProust at 2:36 AM on January 12 [2 favorites]

The Anais Nin blog has a podcast explaining some of the musical influences in her life and work.
posted by adamvasco at 3:50 AM on January 12 [1 favorite]

1:15 it's interesting that the electronics are pretty timeless, while the speech is of its time (in elocution style)

No kidding. The music could be from whenever, but there is no mistaking the speech as from a previous era.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:39 AM on January 12

(To be pedantic, they were pioneers in electronic music — using all analog circuits and tape, not digital.)
posted by mubba at 8:43 AM on January 12

Mubba: you're quite right. I got carried away with the "electro" idea and miscategorized what they actually were doing. Sorry.
posted by MovableBookLady at 8:59 AM on January 12

In the the world of mid-90s search engines, I often had to search for "nin music" or some such phrase rather than just "nin" to find what I was looking for at the time. 15-year-old me probably would have been frustrated had this information been around at the time, but today, I can't wait to get home and have a listen.
posted by Leviathant at 1:20 PM on January 12

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