2020/09/26

Leonin: "Viderunt Omnes"

Leonin (fl. 1150s — d. ? 1201): Organum Duplum for Christmas Day

2020/09/22

Observing in Real Time the Making of a New System of Musical Notation

the first transcriptions of electroacoustic music weren’t made in response to a musical need, but rather to a juridic need: registering the works with organizations protecting intellectual property (the SACEM in France) that legally only recognized works by way of their written score

Laurie Spiegel - Drums (1975)

The extent of Spiegel’s venturesome spirit as a composer is further revealed on the reissue (of The Expanding Universe). In particular, her programming of pitched percussive accents on the polyrhythmic track “Drums,” as well as on the five-minute “Clockworks,”

Daphne Oram's 1960's Optical Synthesizer

Oramics Machine Electronic Music Pioneer 

2020/09/21

The Delian Mode: Delia Derbyshire

The Delian Mode (Kara Blake, 2009) is a a short experimental documentary revolving around the life and work of electronic music pioneer Delia Derbyshire, best known for her groundbreaking sound treatment of the Doctor Who theme music. A collage of sound and image created in the spirit of Derbyshire’s unique approach to audio creation and manipulation, this film illuminates such soundscapes onscreen while paying tribute to a woman whose work has influenced electronic musicians for decades.

Eliane Radigue - IMA Portrait documentary

Her life journey has been remarkable. At the end of the fifties, she studied in Paris with musique concrète pioneers Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry, whom she also assisted, notably for the premiere of L'Apocalypse de Jean. During the sixties she began composing with primitive electronics (feedback and asynchronous tape loops), but found little recognition for her research in France.

2020/09/19

Clocks and Clouds

Ligeti's "Clocks and Clouds" is a relatively-short composition from 1972-1973 that takes its title from Karl Popper's 1966 philosophical essay "Of Clouds and Clocks". In this, Popper makes a compelling and easily-understood argument that scientific phenomena can be broken down into two main categories. The "clocks" are things that we can depend on such as, well, clocks. A clock can be easily measured, taken apart, and reconstructed. "Clouds", on the other hand, are things that we can only get a general, macroscopic view of -- things whose inner-workings we are unable to understand in a deterministic way.

2020/09/16

Moor Mother Seeks to Rewrite History

“Passing of Time,” feels like slipping into a cool bath, Ayewa adapting her voice to suit the song’s staticky warmth. But it isn’t long before tender wounds start to sting: “My mama, my grandmama, my great-great-great grandmama/ picked so much cotton they saved the world/ all by themselves,” she recites over loose drums, a soprano vocal murmuring in the background. The song traces how slavery and oppression laid the foundation for the U.S. economy,

How Galya Bisengalieva Mapped A Soviet Ecological Disaster with Her Violin

The sound summoned an infamous image from her native country, Kazakhstan, which was still part of the Soviet Union when she was born there in 1986. The mental image was of rusting and rotten ship hulls, desiccated atop the sand of a desert where one of the world’s great lakes, the Aral Sea, used to be.
“When I was growing up there, everyone knew about the disaster and what happened—there was water, and then there wasn’t. It was a human-made disaster, something we had done,” says Bisengalieva. “There was sadness.

2020/09/15

The "New Artic"

Scientists often speak of a “new Arctic” to describe the region’s rapidly changing landscape. Temperatures are skyrocketing, sea ice is dwindling and many experts believe the far north is quickly transforming into something unrecognizable.

2020/09/14

“Astronomers all over the world are looking for stellar-mass black holes”

says Julia Bodensteiner, PhD student at KU Leuven and lead author of the study. She continues: “They are predicted by our current understanding of stellar evolution and should thus be out there, but have so far mostly eluded detection.” 

2020/09/11

September 11 Attacks

On September 11, 2001, 19 militants associated with the Islamic extremist group al Qaeda hijacked four airplanes and carried out suicide attacks against targets in the United States. Two of the planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, a third plane hit the Pentagon just outside Washington, D.C., and the fourth plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Almost 3,000 people were killed during the 9/11 terrorist attacks,

Hubble Discovery Hints at a Serious Problem With Our Understanding of Dark Matter

Dark matter is one of the biggest thorns in our understanding of the Universe. Simply put, we don't know what it is. It does not absorb, reflect, or emit any electromagnetic radiation, making it completely undetectable in a direct way. However, it does interact with the Universe's visible matter via gravity.

With a stalemate in Minsk, the next chapter of Belarusian history may be written in the Kremlin

Criminal charges, kidnappings, bags over the head and death threats: the Belarusian leader has deployed all the resources of his repressive apparatus this week in an attempt to suffocate the growing protest movement against his continued rule as he prepares for a crucial meeting with Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

Welcome to the Pyrocene Age

the areas burning, the areas needing to be burned, the off-site impacts with damaged watersheds and airsheds, the unraveling of biotas, the pervasive power of climate change, rising sea levels, a mass extinction, the disruption of human life and habitats – and you have a pyrogeography that looks eerily like an ice age for fire. You have a Pyrocene. The contours of such an epoch are already becoming visible through the smoke.

2020/09/10

Time crystal

"Conceptually a time crystal is a very simple thing: It is a substance where the constituent particles are in constant, systematically repeating motion even in the absence of any external encouragement," 

Javier Ordóñez died following police use of tasers

Bogotá saw another wave of anti-police protests this Wednesday evening after Javier Ordóñez died following police use of tasers. The incident happened in the early hours of the morning, and anger grew throughout the day. With limited response from authorities, tensions at what began as a vigil outside the Villa Luz police CAI in Engativá boiled over into violent protest.

The lawyer and political activist Yamile Guerra, 42, was murdered in Floridablanca in the country’s Santander region on 20 July 2019

Paula Andrea Rosero Ordóñez, 47, was shot dead at close range by two hitmen, according to a police report

More than 400 Colombian lawyers have been murdered since 1991 but no one has been prosecuted for a single killing, a devastating report from 42 British lawyers who visited Colombia last year has revealed. 2009

2020/09/04

Slovakia: the mastermind of the killings was cleared

Marian Kočner, once one of the most powerful people in the country, and his former lover were both cleared of ordering the killings during the hearing on September 3, at the culmination of one of the most high-profile trials in Slovakian history. Long a fixture in the local tabloids due to his extravagant wealth and rumored connections to organized crime, Kočner was only found guilty of one count of possessing ammunition, which he had already admitted. He was handed a 5,000-euro fine.

2020/09/01

TXS 0128+554

is around 500 million light-years away in the constellation Cassiopeia.  It's an active galactic nucleus (AGN), meaning it's a galaxy theoretically hosting a great big supermassive black hole in the middle. In this case the black hole – which is around a billion times the mass of the Sun - is hidden behind dust and gas in the 'cockpit' of the TIE Fighter.

2020/08/28

“I am a Third World artist”

says Doris Salcedo, “from that perspective—from the perspective of the victim, from the perspective of the defeated people—it’s where I’m looking at the world.”

2020/08/27

Alondra de la Parra launches The Impossible Orchestra

Keen to play her part in supporting the women and children suffering abuse and hardship in her native Mexico – a situation greatly worsened during the pandemic – the conductor Alondra de la Parra has created The Impossible Orchestra.

Hollow denials exposed by the watchdog

When The Times first claimed in 2011 that a “culture of silence” had for years facilitated “the sexual exploitation of hundreds of young girls by criminal pimping gangs” in towns and cities across northern England and the Midlands, denial followed denial. We reported that most of the identified victims were white and most known offenders were of Pakistani heritage,

2020/08/21

Evelyne Axell: Tiger Woman


The Greenland Ice Sheet is losing mass at accelerated rates in the 21st century

making it the largest single contributor to rising sea levels. Faster flow of outlet glaciers has substantially contributed to this loss, with the cause of speedup, and potential for future change,

The Amazon is burning: No to EU-MERCOSUR trade deal

The EU is about to sign a “new TTIP” with Mercosur -- aka Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay. It is a deal to import cheap beef, soy, wood and other products grown from the Amazon’s ashes.

2020/08/20

Russian opposition leader Navalny poisoned

Navalny, known for his anti-corruption campaigns against top officials and outspoken criticism of President Vladimir Putin, has suffered physical attacks in the past.

2020/08/19

Lukashenko Doesn’t Want to Be Putin’s Deputy Tsar

No one anticipated such resounding success for the opposition and such failure for President Aleksandr Lukashenko in the presidential elections. The exact results are not known, but polling places that have reported undistorted results recorded 60 to 90 percent of the vote for the main opposition candidate, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, and no more than 17 percent for Lukashenko—more often around 10 percent.

Huge Garbage Patch Found in Atlantic Too

Akin to the Texas-size garbage patch in the Pacific, a massive trash vortex has formed from billion of bits of plastic congregating off North America's Atlantic coast

Do countries with female leaders truly fare better with Covid-19?

The analysis, which is now out as a working paper and has been submitted for consideration to a journal, found that the infection rate and death rate of Covid-19 were both lower in countries run by women compared to those in male-led countries. In an effort to isolate the specific effect of having a female leader, they compared female-led countries to male-led countries that are similar in population, geography, gender equality, health expenditures, and number of tourists. No matter how they sliced the data, female-led countries fared better.

2020/08/15

COVID-19 will accelerate the arts’ ability to connect with audiences through technology

The pandemic strikes at the heart of why orchestras exist: to bring people together and build community through the power and emotion of live music. For many, that loss is an existential experience.

Tschabalala Self: Princess


Speculation on Black Artists Has Gotten So Intense That for Christie’s Latest Sale, Its Curator Is Asking Buyers to Sign a Special Contract

In February, a painting by Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo sold at Phillips in London for $881,432—more than 10 times its estimate and more than 3,000 percent what the seller had paid for it less than a year earlier. As usual, the artist did not see a penny from the transaction

2020/08/14

Ex-cop’s video captures crowd’s horror during Floyd arrest

The video made available Thursday comes from fired Officer Tou Thao, one of four former Minneapolis police officers charged in the death of Floyd, a handcuffed Black man. Floyd died after a white officer, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee against Floyd’s neck for nearly eight minutes on a south Minneapolis street May 25 as Floyd repeatedly said he could not breathe.

2020/08/10

Picasso Y-Block Controversy

Viksjø and engineer Sverre Jystad designed the Y-Block using “Naturbetong”, or “natural concrete,” an experimental casting technique based on an aggregate of aluminum and silicon metal, which created a tactile surface receptive to sandblasting. Nesjar’s technique, called “Betograve,” entailed pouring concrete over a form—in this case, Picasso’s designs—tightly packed with gravel. The concrete was then sand-blasted with a high-pressure hose, exposing the gravel beneath. The final product was a singularity for the time and place: Brutalist architecture married with modernist figuration.

Uncovering Indonesia’s Act of Killing

1965-1966 Indonesian massacre, one of the worst, yet least known, mass killings since World War II, in which an estimated half a million Indonesians suspected of being Communists were murdered by soldiers and paramilitary death squads.

How ‘Jakarta’ Became the Codeword for US-Backed Mass Killing

Operação Jacarta. Yakarta Viene. Plan Yakarta. In both Spanish and Portuguese, in all three ways it was used, it’s clear what “Jakarta” meant: anticommunist mass murder and the state-organized extermination of civilians who opposed the construction of capitalist authoritarian regimes loyal to the United States. It meant forced disappearances and unrepentant state terror. And it would be employed far and wide in Latin America over the two decades that followed.

2020/08/09

How 5 People Survived Nagasaki’s Nuclear Hell

Truman and the Secretary of War, made a concerted effort to publish articles justifying the use of the bombs, excluding any information about what happened to the people beneath the atomic clouds.

August 9, 1945

At 11:02 A.M., their morning was broken by a blinding white flash in the sky. The plutonium bomb dropped by the United States unleashed more than 21 kilotons of firepower, ripping through Nagasaki and killing as many as 70,000 people almost instantly. Ikeda was only one of 47 survivors from his elementary school; 1,400 students were killed, and 50 others were missing.

2020/08/08

The bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

A mushroom cloud is seen over Nagasaki, Japan, after the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city on August 9, 1945

2020/08/07

Covid-19 lockdown will have 'negligible' impact on climate crisis

putting the huge sums of post-Covid-19 government funding into a green recovery and shunning fossil fuels will give the world a good chance of keeping the rise in global temperatures below 1.5C. The scientists said we are now at a “make or break” moment in keeping under the limit – as compared with pre-industrial levels – agreed by the world’s governments to avoid the worst effects of global heating.

2020/08/06

Beirut explosion: death toll rises to 137 as army takes control of site

Lebanese officials have started blaming each other for leaving the highly explosive substance sitting so close to residential neighbourhoods for six years. The ammonium nitrate was taken from a ship that docked in Beirut in 2013 and was apparently abandoned by its Russian owner and mostly Ukrainian crew.