A little music concrete?

So I was in the pub the other evening chatting about a link that was sent to me about a 20th century composer called Roland Kayn (1933-2011). The friend who sent it, a well-known professor of cognitive computing, was turned on by the concept of cybernetic music but upon listening to it was overwhelmingly disappointed. We went down the inevitable road of discussing the merits of concept vs aesthetic and I was adamant that, more often than not, when the concept is interesting the aesthetic is often inaccessible for most listeners. I was convinced that though the scores looked pretty (see below for link) the music probably wasn’t that interesting. Then I found this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZaW-2cMt7Q

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I am not sure of his modus operand nor can I claim to have fully understood nor embraced the concept of ‘cybernetic music’ but Kayn has definately achieved something special here. It is, and forgive for my subjective fluff, a Cliff Martinez infused electronic syrup of Ligeti and Stockhausen. It is also deeply moving and quite beautiful.

On a different note I found this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ephfK_MdihY

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This is clearly a different beast but again it is fucking awesome. From a sound design point of view, even by today’s standards, it would be considered brilliant. The use of reverb and stereo is one of the most extreme, unpredictable and reactive examples I have ever heard. More interestingly, I would be more than happy to bet my bottom dollar that the subject use of parameters was paramount in achieving the aesthetic. In short, Kayn is good.

For more info click on the link to the original article sent to me below:

http://socks-studio.com/2014/11/03/roland-kayn-and-the-development-of-cybernetic-music/

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