initial_experiments_in_360sound

Its not something I’m particularly used to – construction an idea then manifesting and executing it… Its something I’ve noticed thats differed from our collaboration since last year; which very much fed of momentum, building of experimentation very much in the moment? Which of course happens in most processes, but never have we established such a clear idea and experiment before hand. I think thats kinda interesting, the different approaches?

Over the course of the two days we have this kit booked out, day 1 went really well. Using an azimuth Pan instead of the conventional left to right panning of audio, we were able to channel some previously supercollider projects over 8 speakers – With only a small amount of adjustment to the code of pre existing projects we’ve made, the full audio expansion brought these compositions to a new level, a much denser full surround sound.

Sat in the middle of this circular formation of speakers, Its as if what was a ‘track’ had become an ambience, as if we were now not just performing sound but constructing or altering the very atmosphere of the room. Really can’t downplay the transformation.

Another thing worth noting; I was able to visualise the sound in a totally different way. I usually think of sound design as the layering of sound upon one another or slotting recordings into one another in a linear fashion – Sitting in the middle of these 8 speakers you really get a the spacial sensation, as if your now placing sound in different areas of a room, constructing an environment almost?

Working with supercollider, i’ve never payed so much attention to every aspect and element to a sound. Never has it felt so much like sound is a malleable material. Perhaps its the script like format which we can read as if it were a book? So in a way its a totally abstract way of visualising production…

This abstraction is what really hooks me into the process, working with what feels like real data, and giving that a sonic element… I think if the audience were to see what was happening on the screen, they’d equally feel either unnerved by whats going on or fascinated maybe?

We’ve encouraged a few people to come in a sit, and explained whats going on and the reaction seems to go either way, most just sit back and enjoy what feels like luxury listening – I wonder how it would work if our screens were projected? If an audience had that as well? Would it distract? or enhance the experience? I’m not sure in the particular arrangement.

We really worked into the randomisation of the algorithmic code, randomising the direction (panning) of the audio, as well as pattern and frequency of the samples or synthesised sounds.  So whats essentially happening here is we’ve told supercollider to distribute the bell sample at random around the stereo field (8 speakers)

What would be really great would be to experiment with speaker height too, having them at head level – Although it is interesting to watch people crouch or lay down inside this circle… Which would naturally have an effect on listening – Thinking about it, maybe we’ve downplayed an audience role here, sat or stood, body language.

Thinking that getting the stands for the speakers is a natural development – think it be cool if you could just walk into the circle and immediately feel the change.

At least 6 people mentioned what it be like if you couldn’t see the speakers? Something to bare in mind. I personally kinda like the aesthetic of the speaker, the wires drawing along the floor. Can’t help but enjoy the presents of the analogue gear. Especially in the presents of people, the image makes me think terminator vibez. Flesh, metals, wire.

 

 

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