Atom Interference (Currie)



About the piece:
It explores the concept of the individual acting within the mass, the smallest, the atomic unit working within a larger structure. In concrete, musical, terms this involves an exploration of the ways in which individual musical gestures develop interactive attributes within a context of sustained sound. It is for this reason that I chose to write the piece for bowed bass guitar and live electronics. Incorporating sustained sounds as well as shorter gestures, it was possible to explore the potential of a effects unit in a different way, designed as they are to deal with sounds with a relatively quick decay – something conventionally individual could be treated as part of a mass of sound.

On a more abstract level, the piece explores a three dimensional, interactive notion of musical space. Through the unusual techniques of the piece's performance and instrumentation, the body of the performer acts within a renegotiated performative space. In turn, it is hoped that this space addresses the listening subject as an individual within the massed space. The way in which the performance is mixed hopes to intensify this - the listener occupies a fixed position looking out across an expansive space; as their eye/ear moves across the landscape, it passes over various objects that are situated within it. The title is drawn from Chronicles II, 26:10.


About the composer:
Joseph Currie is composer at the Oxford Faculty of Music.