Iannis Xenakis Lives On
January 26, 2007 5:15 PM   Subscribe

Autechre Max/MSP screenshots.
posted by four panels at 6:11 PM on January 26, 2007

First let me say I do like his music, and I mean no disrespect in relaying this anecdote.

He gave a lecture at the New England Academy of Music where he spent quite some time expaining the compositional methods he used to create the piece we were about to hear. All kinds of graphs, charts, and formulas were sketched on the blackboard. Then the piece was played on tape. A full two minutes or so into the piece he said "wait! stop! rewind the tape." The tape had been stored tails out and we were hearing it played backwards.
posted by StickyCarpet at 6:13 PM on January 26, 2007

Hm, seems like you need some kind of OSC capable program to receive data from this. Not trivial. Have you gotten this running yourself, hama7? I'm gonna try it with pd-extended.

Aphex Twin was saying (probably bullshitting) in a recent interview that he used the Upic system.
posted by fleetmouse at 9:10 PM on January 26, 2007

I'm running it on my iBook.

You know, I just got home from this, and now I'm playing with this. My mind hurts, but in a good way.
posted by roll truck roll at 11:50 PM on January 26, 2007

Oh. Heh, fleetmouse was right. I was wondering why I couldn't make any sound come out of this.
posted by roll truck roll at 11:59 PM on January 26, 2007

Hey, roll truck roll, that SF tape music fest looks like it might've had some great moments. The concerts were all in total darkness? Must've been pretty cool. Good to know, too, that there are still folks working with the medium of magnetic tape. I'd be curious to hear about which pieces made the biggest impression on you.

Oh, and sorry to sort of derail, there, hama7, but I've been reticent to download any of the stuff from your link... waiting for a few more comments to get a feel for what's what. I know, I'm a coward...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:59 PM on January 26, 2007

I give up. I downloaded and installed 4 separate packages, loaded a score, loaded a pd patch, got the two programs talking to each other, and still no sound.

If someone gets sound, could you record it and megaupload an mp3? And maybe tell how you got it to work? I refuse to spend any more time on this unless someone offers me money or a course grade from a legitimate academic institution. :-)
posted by fleetmouse at 9:14 AM on January 27, 2007

it's not super difficult. hard part is making sound like anything anyone would want to here i guess.

hard but fun would be a vector graphic to iannix osc msg converter. graphics to audio, done any way you like it :)

posted by shift8 at 12:10 PM on January 27, 2007

Exciting stuff -- thanks so much! I'm going to see if I can get it working via Chuck (windows version).
posted by treepour at 12:47 PM on January 27, 2007

Looks like there's now OSC support in CSound, if that particular rabbit hole calls your name. (It's been a long time since I last worked with CSound, so this may not be all that recent of a development).
posted by treepour at 12:54 PM on January 27, 2007

It was very cool, flapjax. Last night was just the first night; two more nights to go. Yeah, the theatre is in total darkness, the lights would come up briefly between each piece. There were sixteen different audio channels, being played in twenty different speakers. The highlight of the night, for me, was definitely the Ligeti pieces. It convinced me I need to own some CDs of his work.

Also very cool was a piece by George Cremaschi. It was sort of a call-and-response between electronic noise and religious chanting. Jen Boyd's piece was breathtaking in the 20-speaker environment, somewhat disappointing on my iBook speakers.

If you click through my profile, you'll find a group blog that I write for. There's a good chance I'll do a write-up of the whole festival there, if you're interested.

Sorry, sorry, sorry. To make this comment not a derail, I'll also add this:

Playing with this program was very interesting, even if I couldn't figure out how to make any sound come out of it. Clearly someone needs to make a Flash-based Poor Man's Version of this.

I became interested in contemporary classical music in sort of the opposite direction that a lot of people do. I started being aware of it not through other music, but through experimental writing and theatre that I was interested in. I felt like I needed to understand the music better in order to have the full picture. Xenakis' way of investigation, his way of interrogating music on a very cerebral level, is very exciting to me.

I read an essay awhile ago praising the invention of ProTools, saying that it was the completion of something that had been started by people like Satie and been carried through Cage, Xenakis, Joe Meek, Eno. I thought that was pretty cool.
posted by roll truck roll at 1:03 PM on January 27, 2007

Exciting stuff -- thanks so much! I'm going to see if I can get it working via Chuck (windows version).

It worked fine with Chuck on a Mac. Well, fine as in it was easy to make some bleep-squeak-bloop noises for a while, until I got bored and started mucking about with Chuck directly. I imagine that with a bit more patience, though, the combination of the two could be pretty good fun.
posted by jack_mo at 1:37 PM on January 27, 2007

I got it to make noise on a PC with Chuck.

YMMV Instructions:

Download the Iannix Chuck examples from here.

Download miniAudicle, a Chuck integrated development and performance environment from here or here.

Run Iannix and open the Chuck score (an XML file).

Run miniAudicle and open one of the Chuck example files (one of the .ck files).

In miniAudicle, start the virtual machine. On the window with the iannix file, click the "Add Shred" button (big green plus sign).

In Iannix, click the play icon (upper left).

You should hear some beeps & things as the Iannix cursor moves across the wacky red lines.
posted by treepour at 3:03 PM on January 27, 2007 [1 favorite]

BTW, thanks roll truck roll for the heads-up on the tape music festival. I'm going to try to make it tonight.
posted by treepour at 3:10 PM on January 27, 2007

Treepour, thanks for the miniAudicle links. Kickass!
posted by kid ichorous at 3:37 PM on January 27, 2007

kickass. great link.
posted by mwhybark at 4:58 PM on January 27, 2007

Yay, it made sound!

treepour = my hero.
posted by fleetmouse at 8:53 AM on January 28, 2007

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