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solo computer music

by Phil Maguire

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probst i 18:44


Two lowercase computer compositions. Edited live performances.

there will be no miracles here.

Max/MSP and found sounds
Premiered on BBC Radio 3 on 24 September 2016

probst i

Pure Data, Max/MSP, Reaper, mixing board, and found sounds
Written in response to paintings by Franz Kline and Clyfford Still

"These fumbling crackles and shapeless tones waft across each other in slow-mo digital drift, motherboard reveries transmitted deep from a hard disk on standby. There’s a satisfying sense of algorithmic self-determination at times here, yet the fact that these two pieces are actually edits of live, human performances in no way detracts from their terse machine anomie. Originally broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2016 – a triumph of public service broadcasting! – the first cut, there will be no miracles here, sees Maguire alternating the scuffle and buzz of his software with abrupt snatches of found sound. The disjunction between the two is deliberate, the disembodied voices of Maguire’s samples, possibly clips of old adverts and public information films, bursting out from the dusty blur as if trying to escape from an archive prison.

The companion piece, probst I, takes inspiration from paintings by Franz Kline and Clyfford Still, and the rugged jitters of its textures have a gestural, tactile quality that on some level establishes a commonality with the ruptures and hefty strokes of those abstract expressionists. It gets pretty feisty at around the halfway mark, to be honest, flurries of stony splatters and gouged clicks alternating with caustic shock-treatment fizz and hyperactive metronome tocks. It’s probably one of the most empathic tracks Maguire’s produced, the unprogrammatic shifts reminding us that, like the best of those paintings, there is a fleshy brain and body responsible behind all of that abstraction. Human after all? Maybe."
-We Need No Swords


released February 25, 2017

Phil Maguire - computer, found sound, mixing board




Phil Maguire Cork, Ireland

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