Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr)
Minimalist ambient electronica with a detectable dark streak would be the broadest description I could give to this, as it is constructed on pretty subdued beats and rhythms that are structured in quite a cutting edge manner.
For this reason, parallels to the Ant-Zen camp would have to be referenced. However not to be fooled by a minimalist description, these compositions are complex in construction and neither is specifically quiet — in essence the two elements you might normally associate with minimalism.
It is rather a circumstance where the tuneful elements are kept to a minimum, as is the actual track flow, rather choosing to gradually evolve the atmospheres over long compositions.
Subdued programmed beats, blips, electric hums, cut up textures, pulsating rhythms and the like are spliced together into melanges of sound that are further tweaked and twisted along the way. Track 5 the title track stands out, as it reminded me of Black Lung from the outset which can only be read as a compliment in my eyes.
But if chilled out ambient electronica is of interest to you, this could be exactly what you are seeking. Continuing the aquatic theme of the Nautilus series, the renowned death industrialists Ah Cama-Sotz have taken on this challenge with rather successful results.
Additionally, with this track paying homage to the legacy of this particular submarine information provided on the sleeve indicates it was responsible for sinking 33 ships it is quite easy to picture the sub silently and majestically gliding into attack with a more suitable soundtrack backing playing out.
On the aesthetic front, the music is pressed onto deep blue vinyl to match the concept, whilst housed in a visually pleasing sleeve creating a fine release for both label and artist. From the project name and CDR title, I must admit that I was really expecting some full throttle noise assault, yet what is actually presented is far removed from this initial perception.
Also given the structure of the songs appearing to have little resemblance to their synthetic origins i. The five compositions on the CD, span between eight minutes at the shortest and up to seventeen minutes at the longest — each holding its own particular charm, yet remaining consistent within the ebb and flow, steadily amassing to grating tension or alternately, subtly shifting off into the infinite distance.
Again this track morphs through a myriad of sections, where a particularly attacking pulse characterises the later section of this track. The packaging is DIY in aesthetic with spray painted card sleeve and screen-printed insert, that while slightly crude, certainly serves its purpose more than adequately.
Being limited to only 50 copies this might be hard to find, yet I have a sneaky suspicion that this might be snapped up for a more official release given its musical excellence.
Note: my hunch turned out to be correct as project soloist Jason Crumer recently informed me that this CD will be re-released in copies on CrimeThink. All in all the song sets an immaculate atmosphere that is somewhat difficult to top anticipation and expectation can be a terrible curse in this regard.
With the bio giving a nod to the likes of Godspeed you Black Emperor! With an overall opinion that this album is patchy in a few places and brilliant in others, I will admit that later wins out overall.
Well surely things could not be that predictable, could they?! The vocals of Mr Rich embellish most songs in a dreamy, softly sung manner that both follow and hold the melody of the compositions, that incidentally for all theirs structure often create an understated atmospheric result this also has much to do with the warm sound production.
I am still unsure whether I prefer the more sombre mood of the debut to the slightly up-tempo twist of this second album only time will tell. An interesting release nonetheless. This metal comparison is mostly due to the vocals that are present through most of the tracks, ranging from the whispered, spoken, and choir-esque to the downright gruff, but all in a generally metal-like style.
While I am not adverse to extreme metal vocals where they have their rightful place, within these musical pieces, however, I feel that they slightly disjoint the atmospheres being evoked. As for the music the compositions tend to work with mid-paced strummed acoustic guitars with keyboard layers replicating orchestral strings, piano, organ etc to build the musical backing or otherwise acting as the total focus on others.
It can be said that despite the tracks being mid-paced, a dark brooding undercurrent remains quite evident throughout. Track 4 features an introductory idea that, while interesting, simply does not work positively for me urgent, disjointed and dissonant piano lines and vocal screams. This opening segment is then stripped back to a darkly sweeping orchestral section that incidentally ends up reviving the intro segment, only to fall away yet again this pattern is then subsequently repeated.
Some good ideas are evident in these offerings, thus at least it will be interesting to see how subsequent recording span out. Thick bass sonics and other amassed sounds converge at varying points, some fleeting while others linger. Some tones suggest a comparison to guitar distortion and feedback, but never become blatantly obvious -yet on the other hand a creepy and macabre piano tune can be heard far off in the distance during the late section of the composition.
Without going into any further descriptive gymnastics, basically I can say that this track is as good as any on the debut. I have listened to this CD quite a few times and still cannot fathom its apparently random exploration of electronic musical styles.
This is not to say that this track is bad by any means, rather that it seems to sever any links to the tracks preceding it, thus tending to slightly disjoint the flow of the album. So after listening to this a number of times, I have to declare that my initial reservations justified. Anyway, the framework of the music is presented in the format of a band, including a female vocalist fronting the project and accommodating a heavy reliance on keyboards guitars and bass are also present, along with a drum machine to complete the unit.
The 10 songs that make up the album are often plodding, driven forward by a drum machine, guitar and bass, whilst the keyboards and mid range vocals are relied upon for the delivery of more emotive elements. Anyway, before I ramble on too much longer, if you are able to filter through my obvious prejudices, the determination of this is the type of album for you will be a much easier task.
Well, it seems that Ataraxia have heralded my call and reverted to the predominant use of real instrumentation ahem. I think I am being just a little presumptuous! On this album Ataraxia appear to be encompassing a greater apocalyptic neo-folk sound than ever before, and for this reason alone this is clearly their strongest release to date.
A romantic accordion tune being the basis for is greatly enhanced with a gradually rising and falling full orchestral backing, that despite being synth generated does not sound as such and this goes for all elements where synthetisers and keyboards are used to replicate orchestral instruments. Auger an unknown project to me present a CD of live improvised recordings dating back to August, To make my reviewing task difficult, the CD contains 9 tracks yet only 8 are listed on the cover…hmmm.
Throughout its lengthy journey the basic framework is tweaked and morphed, including a subdued aquatic segment that takes over midway through and sees the track take a gradual downward spiral into a minimalist piece. Shifting into ultra minimalist sound collage mindset, the title track contains distant blips and electro static that requires the volume to be tinkered with to actually hear what is going on, but when considering the previous track I was initially quite wary of some unforseen outburst reeking havoc on my speakers thankfully that does not eventuate.
Although Autumn have been around for some years, this is actually the first release of theirs, that I have come across.
Likewise, with the vocals being cleanly sung in a rather commanding full-throated style, they compliment the music in a very positive manner. The title track is clearly darkwave in its focus and intent with the smoothly programmed beat being the first indicator.
Additional elements — the strains of a soft acoustic guitar, subdued keyboard lines and far off echoed vocals — work particularly well, creating an emotive and very atmospheric production. On the whole this CD is a great example of a group that can expertly straddle genres those of neo-classical, neo-folk and dark wave and clearly have the song writing skills to back up the task. The agenda is one in which each band utilizes the sound sources of the other in the creation of something that is indicative of both bands, a melding of sonic ideals.
Seeking respite, the sounds pass through many veins, sonic capillaries bounding through convoluted alleyways within the body, from fuzzy and unclear to skittish and electronic, ending up in a place that resonates off of the ionosphere… The sounds are not confined, they explode, dispersing and disintegrating outwards…freedom through the wound.
They remain a part of the confined storm within the abandoned warehouse. An excellent meshing of styles! The criminally under-recognised Bad Sector returns with a new release spanning two formats and two recordings sessions. The Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) of dark keyboard layers and alien-like vocalisations processed with the rigid programmed percussion work supremely well, and is particularly enhanced with choir-like textures midway through.
The three tracks from the Dolmen sessions encompass a much more deep space oriented sound with ominous shifts of keyboards and heavy but fleeting percussion. The cover image of an ominous sky severed by power poles and electric wires is a perfect visual counterpart to the compositions of Bad Sector. As it is limited to only copies, you might have some trouble finding one of these as I know the labels are already fully sold out. With a name like Baradelan, an anagram of Aldebaran, one would be lead to believe that Baradelan is a tip of the hat to the masters of crackling anonymity, Inade.
Meaning that the genesis of Baradelan is aligned with and inspired by the godfather of sonic darkness, Lustmord. Anorgonia In The Carcinomatous Shrinking Biopathy title derived from the writings of Wilhelm Reich is a fascinating excursion down the desolate corridors of space, a clinical analysis of dark sonicscape terrain devoid of hope. The fact that the vacuum of sounds incorporated here reach across the vast, empty cosmos, adds a delicious layer of discomfort to an already expected finality see titlethough the death in question is gentle, like a pillow pressed over the face of the sleeping.
The scope of tones here emanate from the internal vacancy of soul, out towards the unattainable horizon; the mood is one of solitude, enveloped in morose intentions: lifeless…despondent…so very alone.
Instead, though, it is only made to battle, inflict more torment, on a body already wasting away… And the dim, flickering bulbs of the endless corridors of space, and deflated spirit radiate gloomily as one wanders, not towards the light, but towards uncertainty… Though precious moments of all-encompassing darkness sprinkled throughout may confirm the influence of Lustmord, Baradelan move well beyond that pitch-black genesis, the air of uncertainty a major part of the burgeoning sound.
This unknown and almost unpronounceable project has been snapped up by Athanor after the original version was released as a limited CDR on some label called Black Dead Rabbit?! Pretty big words you might say, now the question is: does this album come through with the good to back up such a statement? In a single sentence, I think this release falls just short of reaching the same breadth and depth of the aforementioned album, yet I do acknowledge that this is still a powerful recording.
Forging forward from the outset with cyclic pulsations, track one sets the scene to make way for track two to take on a broader and more atmospheric frame that sweeps off into nebulous regions. Continuing on the building and evolving format, track three arrives as a mass of urgent partly, metallic sweeping atmospheric sound textures and conjures up an image of a ancient monolithic generator positioned at the centre of the cosmos, that for unnumbered aeons has been powering the infinite expansion of the universe….
More brooding and catatonic, track four uses deeper more minimalist movements to create its atmosphere of cosmic resonance, including just a hint of melody and slow rhythmic percussive sounds and to an extent actually reminds me of early Archon Satani. However at around the five minute mark this track verges off into a panoramic styled soundscape with the whole atmosphere becoming increasingly urgent. Taken as a whole, this recording does a splendid job of evoking visions of the cold barren cosmos.
While the new BDN offering is finally with us, the first thing that strikes you is that its cover is presented in a white sleeve with pink writing instead of the trademark black tones and necrose symbol. Depicting a facial image of an innocent female teenager, it is only upon closer inspection that a nasty twist is evident, creating a cover that is quite reminiscent of the artwork of Trevor Brown. Further referencing the inner sleeve, this reveals images of a dental inspection being undertaken on another teenage girl.
While these pictures in themselves are not at all shocking, they begin to become slightly disturbing when considered in the context of the album.
With vocals being somewhat subservient to the harsh noise layers as well as the processed, flesh-shredding treatmentthere is little if any opportunity to decipher content, a task rendered even more impossible with no lyrics sheet. Here low bass throbs, wavering sonic layers and what appears to be a distorted voice sample merge to create an interplay via an addition-and-subtraction style that in itself forges a sparse, looping style.
On the title track, a queasy idling machine and high pitched squeals are juxtaposed against sounds of children playing, all in all creating a somewhat sickening result in regard to both the sonic tone and the implications of the content.
With this track having the most easily decipherable vocals that mostly repeats the title, the seedy sonic underbelly consists of slow machine drawls and coagulated sound textures ranging from guttural to squealingall contributing to a very tasty offering. While it has been stated that this album represents the completion of a cycle, God only knows and I question if such an entity could possibly exist in the realm of BDN!
Until then this provides ample redemption. The well established project Celluloid Mata have now found their way to the Ant-Zen roster, which is understandable given this fresh sounding album of intelligent electronica mixed with a power noise styling. This deep rhythmic approach is again utilised, yet taken up a notch or three!
Overall the tracks are mostly orientated to the heavier and noisy rhythmic beats, with these elements usually taking the main focus while more subdued layers of drones and sounds carry along the more minimalist tunes the final track makes particularly good use of a subtly progressing tune that is devoid of any beats or rhythms.
Apart from the music, Stefan Alt presents yet another great idea for the cover with a transparent film over-wrap and a series of cards presented in the style of Polaroid photographs. Therefore, my expectations where high as I anxiously awaited this double disc release of promised dark sonicscape excellence. I suppose my expectations my have been too high, as the first two tracks on disc one, Midnight Prayer, failed to enrapture me as I wanted. Of course, my initial hesitancy was unnecessary, as most everything here including the aforementioned first two tracks—having now heard them repeatedly, they are more than worthy—quite intriguing, actually borders on brilliance, if not successfully attains it!
The world of Chaos As Shelter is one that escorts the listener into the enigma of the unknown nether regions of the earth, a tattered latticework of rickety scaffolding constructed across broad, mysterious plains of concrete and squalor. The mottled landscapes contain sparse textural elements, moments of brusque noise but not of volume, per se, more of sensation, surging forth before slipping back into a hiding placemoments of scattered resonance, moments of uncertainty enveloped in curiosity.
Though it may seem to meander, the music of Chaos As Shelter is never less than intriguing, flashing wild, flickering images of esoteric origin on the uninhibited cinema within the skull, as timbres of contemplation mingle with designs of an improvisational nature. Disc two, Illusion, is a dark sonicscape masterpiece!
This strange buzzing crops up throughout. And the landscape breathes! And an unearthly horn blows… And a trace of something else melody? Powerfully expansive work, inventive and infernally aligned. The music is made of more programmed synth sounds, but these are quicker paced in tune and contain a trance- oriented vibe.
Gradual metamorphosis of the basic structure occurs over its 12 minutes, but the track remains quick paced and focussed throughout, while becoming noisier and more galactic in scope. Undoubtedly Coil in sound and scope, this is a second opportunity to obtain this once deleted mail order album. Likewise, even before I got to hear the actual CD, with the cover encompassing photocopied card that is hand stitched together, certainly presents a personalised aura for the music held within.
In terms of the music itself, Cold Electric Fire presents sparse and darkly emotive soundscapes that fall somewhere between dark ambience and drone compositions.
Consisting of a distant forlorn sound, a faint emotive plucked guitar tune can be detected within the drone framework, yet despite its short length this track feels to be much longer. Quite dynamic, it quickly whips up a maelstrom of sound that whilst is a drone oriented piece hints at classical melodies buried under numerous layers whether or not actual classical samples are used is another question entirely — but the effect is nonetheless stunning. With the darkly crafted tune shifting along at a catatonic pace, the actual tune is barely discernable, rather utilising the drawn out notes to evoke its enveloping aura.
Building the track with manipulated percussion this piece surges out to the horizon effortlessly spanning every aural chasm along the way.
With its longer length, this track quite appropriately meanders along unfettered with the final moments whisked off with swirling winds. The mid-paced title track works on approximately two levels: one being the filthy underside of constant bass rumblings, the other the multifaceted squealing feedback that chaotically burst in and out of earshot. There sounds like there might be vocals somewhere in amongst it all, but these are severely mutilated so as to not resemble that of a human voice much as the image of the corpse on the cover.
Rather then boiling the blood, this track tends to place it simmering temperature just short of all hell breaking loose. Ultimately this track works much better due to its somewhat building structure, a quality that I find particularly enticing in power electronics projects. As this item is my first taste of both the label and group, both seem to be worthy elements of the growing US scene and are worth keeping an eye out for. Well, arguments aside, this CD could have been packaged in a plain black case without loosing any of the inherent intensity of the power electronics blitzkrieg.
With the sound and focus quickly established, the remaining pieces surge forward in a similar manner. Anyway, to say that Control represents a strong contender in the growing US power electronics scene would be an understatement, as this CD solidifies what all the fuss has been about with previous live performances and limited edition vinyl and CDR items.
It should be noted that this release is also somewhat limited with only copies having been pressed. Blast Furnace is consummate rhythmic noise, meticulously crafted, sculpted from metal and burnished in blood and sweat. The title track stutters amidst whiplash, metallic percussion, discharging multiple layers of static ricochet noise, shifting the focus throughout.
The construction may sound familiar, but the results are Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) but, as the locked in methodology is honed to a precision most excursions into rhythmic noise lack. As Corey K. Creekmur and Linda Y. Corey K. Elsewhere, Dudley Andrew also argues that the term global is more totalizing than world, which implies transnational negotiations: Google would be an example of the former, while anime would be an example of the latter.
Fredric Jameson and Masao Miyoshi, eds. See, for example, Toby Miller et al. See Jameson, Archaeologies of the Future, xii. On material metaphors, see Hayles, Writing Machines. So often cyborg perception in cinema and animation appears in the form of a mechanized or technologized eye moving through the world, as if looking through the viewfinder of massively enhanced monocular apparatus, that also offers a broad range of sensory measurement of the environment, from infrared night vision and zooms to facial rec- ognition and pattern matches.
In fact, cyborg hearing typically gravitates toward voices in the head, that is, hearing messages from other cyberized entities without their actually speak- ing, without emitting sound into their surroundings. Rather, speech is one supposes formulated and transmitted electronically or digi- tally without any initial production of sound wavesyet is received through an activation of the human sensory apparatus for hearing, and then heard as if in the head.
With both cyborg seeing and hearing, the effect is that of a per- ceiver behind the perceiving, a disembodied subject that may readily move from body to body, while bodies begin to figure as nothing more than apparatuses for the transmission and reception of images and sounds, as disposable and exchangeable as cameras or mobile phones.
These examples of cyborg perception are drawn primarily from. But cyborg perception is so consistently staged in this manner across a range of films and animations produced in various locations around the world, that it is surely a familiar trope for viewers of other cyborg films and animations.
As such, it runs counter to claims made for how cyborgs signal a rupture with Carte- sian dualism, for what is staged in such instances is the very possibility of a disembodied subject. Of course, this sort of perception is not all that happens in films and animations dealing with cyborgs.
Moving images do not and probably cannot remain fixated on one sort of per- ceptual experience. There is, for instance, a relation between seeing and hearing, which adds a twist. This is the lure of cyborg perception. At the same time, if cyborgs today arouse less theoretical enthu- siasm and controversy than they did in the s, it is because the cyborg problematic came to an impasse in its reliance on a certain way of contesting the disembodied subject or Cartesian ego.
Quite simply, it is not networked enough. Although I fully agree that thinking relation presents a powerful alternative, I tend to think that the impasse of the cyborg problematic lies not so much in its emphasis on the individual as in its recourse to a disembodied subject. Feminist critics exploring new materialisms called attention to this problem.
Such a move merely displaces the disembodied subject onto a networked or distributed subjectivity or cognition. The challenge of thinking relation lies in attending to relation prior to the emergence of the two terms human and machine in Haraway; consciousness and computation in Hayle that at once grounds their distinction and is produced and changed by their interaction. As such, it is not a question of looking at how computation distributes con- sciousness but of considering what relation distributes experience into computation and consciousness or into human and machineand how their interaction potentially transforms that relation.
Films and animations are good to think with in this context because they work with and through experience. Returning to our initial problematic of cyborg perception, we see that an impasse arises when we accept the distinction between perceiver and perceived, only to argue that the distinction then becomes blurred or ambiguous.
For we then accept the idea of a disembodied transcendent subject that undergoes a crisis of identity. Challenging the disembod- ied subject thus demands working to some extent against the grain of some of received stories about cyborgs, which often stage such a crisis of identity on the part of cyborg, reinforcing the idea of a preexisting subject that is thrown into crisis by technology. Yet, thinking the relation requires that we complicate this paradigm of a preexisting identity that is threatened by technical al- teration.
Scan Lines 7. The ghost is matter of embodied experience and intuition of the world rather than disembodied subjectivity. It entails, in effect, feeling rather than perceiving. Where the perceiver seems to reside in the shell or in the head and to stand outside the world, the ghost feels the world and the self at the same time, prior to the perceiver being con- scious of either. Affect moves between and into and out of bodies in a literal, physical sense. After all, the speculative may well prove pragmatic if it affords a productive reading of science.
They also feel the world in scan lines, which are, in effect, material residues or artifacts of communication and transmission, which usually tend to escape notice. Yet with the scan line, the world and other entities in it are in turn feeling the individual cyborg: the relation between individual and collective is at once being produced and becoming pro- ductive in a mode of affective communication.
Disjunctive Synthesis When a television screen makes an appearance within a movie, rows of fine lines often appear Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) the screen, dark narrow bands traversing the bright image. These scan lines commonly result from a disjuncture be- tween two media platforms.
For instance, the movie camera is captur- ing images at a frame rate different from the frame rate or refresh rate of the image on the television screen. The movie camera thus picks up what the human eye does not perceive on the television screen: cathode rays fire half the image at a time in alternating rows at a rate faster than the human eye can detect.
The movie camera, however, shooting at a faster rate, catches the interlacing of the two images, and the result is a striping effect of darker and lighter bands across the image. Scan lines also can appear when something recorded at one rate is replayed at a different rate, which we generally associate with video playback when the frequency of the screen does not match that of the video.
Footage shot with surveillance cameras commonly is presented with scan lines to indicate a discrepancy in resolution between two plat- forms. Because scan lines appeared historically in media practices associated with television screens that used cathode ray tubes and interlaced images, in the context of such processes as adapting video games, playing back camcorder footage, and filming television screens, scan lines have gradually become associated with the expe- rience of television screens in general.
As such, even in recent films, when television screens make an appearance on screen it is common to present them with scan lines. After all, the use of cathode ray tubes or CRT screens is a thing of the past: production of cathode ray tubes ceased inand current television screen tech- nologies liquid crystal and plasma displays do not interlace images.
Nonetheless, scan lines re- main the most common way to stage effects of transmission in films and animations. Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) crosshatching appears as an alternative, it is usually in oscillation with scan lines, which suggests a lack of certainty about whether a transition is indeed under way, and whether it is or can be complete. Because scan lines today usually are added to the image as special effect, rather than appearing spontaneously as an artifact of filming, their continued usage is all the more striking.
In Argo, for instance, in keeping with the general mission of the film to create the sense of a direct seamless relation to the past, television screens do not show scan lines and do not produce an experience of disjuncture.
In sum, as these brief examples indicate, the appearance of scan lines entails something more than a simple and direct artifact of film- ing. In this respect, cinema is hand in glove with animation.
Nonetheless, there are a variety of ways of negotiating this effect. Such a distinction thus actually serves to stabilize at the level of media forms the very dis- tinctions that the film proposes to destabilize at the level of plot and action.
In sum, scan lines may be evoked in a variety of ways. They may even be utilized nostalgically, for in- stance, as signs of the good old days of television or the classic era of video games. In fact, scan lines have even become a sign of the digital. The Call is a good example, because it not only shows television footage with scan lines but also imbues its graphics and its look with scan lines in order to give the sense of proliferating humming networks of information, weaving to- gether cell phones, cameras, and screens.
Similarly, books on digital media in Japan from the late s and early s feature images with scan lines. Yet if we look at what is happening in scan lines, this association makes perfect sense.
At work in the scan line is disjunctive synthesis, which builds together different media operations of capturing, sending, and receiving. Recall that the refresh rate for computer screens for many years was modeled on that of the television screen, building an analogy between computer and television screens that was not in any way technologically necessary.
Although today neither tele- vision nor computer screens employ interlaced images, the ease with which computer screens are used for viewing television is surely due at least in part to this initial analogy constructed between them.
The critical question with scan lines, then, is not that of whether they appear or not. It is one of how and how much the effect of dis- junctive synthesis is deactivated enclosed or contained within a stable semiotic system or activated amplified and prolonged in experience.
Films with media puzzle effects such as Total Recall, Bourne Legacy, and Inception are difficult to gauge, because such films studiously, even laboriously Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) at the tipping point, vacillating between activation and deactivation.
If films with puzzle effects based on staging disjunctive synthesis via scan lines are becoming more common, it is surely because there is an increased awareness of scan lines as an actual effect, as an active force, rather than an artifact to be tolerated or ignored.
The use of scan line effects in animation, then, should not be considered to be secondary to or merely derivative of cinematic effects. In this instance, the idea that animation is operating at a remove from the indexical capture associated with live action filming does not imply a dimin- ishment of an original but rather a sustained engagement with and prolongation of an effect. This mode of fusion is presented in terms reminiscent of dis- junctive synthesis: fusion does not result in a blurring of distinctions insofar as both entities are said to retain their distinctive identities within their fusion or unification.
Especially salient is the contrast between computer images and images of the everyday urban world, that is, between cyberscapes and cityscapes. Cyberscapes are images resembling what would appear on a computer screen, which are transmitted directly from computers to cyberized brains Figure 1.
For instance, computer graphics track the location of a car upon a grid, allowing section 9 cyberpolice to pursue their quarry. Such imagery may appear crude in design by contemporary standards, consisting of a black screen with simple geo- metric layouts in glowing green, but the idea is contemporary enough: there is a direct digital transmission of GPS tracking information into the cyberized brain.
Such cyberscapes, with their simplicity of design, color, and illumination, contrast sharply with the cityscapes. Figure 1. Even when brilliantly colored, fully illu- minated advertisements and street signs appear on screen, their hues are somewhat less saturated than expected, which imparts a tinge of warmth and intimacy, in keeping with the feel of camcorder footage.
What is the relation between these two distinct perceptual experi- ences, between these cyberscapes and cityscapes that feel like different worlds? The story opens a potentially antagonistic relation between them. The Ghost in the Shell thus seems to flirt with the notion, du- bious yet popular in the s, that globalization tended to eliminate national boundaries and ethnic affiliations.
It displaces them especially onto the Japanese female cyborg, the Major, who is particularly prone to doubt her identity. Such doubts assail the Major, especially in the wake of two incidents in which the Pup- pet Master has hacked into the human cyberbrain, implanted a fake memory, and taken control of a conscious person.
How to know if you are a puppet or not? Indeed, protracted discussions and extended citation always occur in conjunction with sequences that highlight media and technology. Clearly, conceptual questions and discourses are not autonomous of media through which they appear. Oshii instead situates us within a media experience of the problematic, which be- comes salient in the contrast between cyberscapes and cityscapes.
Cyberscapes offer a tentative experience of disembodiment: you see what the cyborg sees computerized imagery and hear what the cyborg hears voices in the head reverberating as if you could occupy that body, as if a body were but a center of perception.
The low rhythmic pulse of the music over the longer sequences in- creases the detached quality of the scenery. In one sequence in which the Major ponders the reality of her self, as the viewing position gradu- ally comes closer to her face, the layers of background cityscape appear to separate, as if the city had become unmoored, and a voice that does not seem to be hers speaks, laden with reverberation to signal that its source is cyber. The crisis of the Cartesian subject, then, is not merely in cyberscapes or cityscapes but in their relation.
What is their relation? If you pay attention only to the action of the film, there is an ac- celerating pattern of alternation between the two audiovisual types that does afford a certain degree of blurring, as if the two terms were gradually merging, as the spokes of the wheel appear to blur when the wheel turns rapidly.
Things will somehow cohere, you feel, provided everything continues to accelerate until the end. Yet, at the same time, the languid pacing of some sequences in The Ghost in the Shell reminds you that at any moment the distinct terms may precipitate out of the mix as soon as the stirring slows: the terms are in colloidal suspension instead of dissolving into a solution. The ex- perience of the film is as much one of incipient precipitation as one of action accelerating to an end.
Events are precipitating. It is precisely at this point that you might notice something unusual about the staging of cyborg perception: scan lines. It is easy to miss this fleeting instance of perception that is neither cyberscape nor cityscape, and both. Later, however, the film suddenly brings this mode of perception to the fore. Section 9 learns the whereabouts of the Puppet Master he is in the body of a cyborized man who is in turn taking control of a cyborized man, a garbage collectorand the garbage man rushes to warn him.
As the cyberized man looks at the approaching garbage truck, he perceives the world in scan lines Figure 1. Finally, in the penultimate scene in which the Puppet Master and the Major fuse, perception is consistently, even insistently, rendered with scan lines. The scan line becomes impossible to ignore. Because such a synthesis was always already present in the scan line, the merging or fusing of the two entities is less a break with the existing order of things than its defining moment.
But how does such a disjunctive synthesis work, concretely and specifically, in The Ghost in the Shell? First, because the scan lines characterizing cyborg perception are identical to the scan lines that arise when shooting video footage, the cyborg is situated as a sort of media platform.
In this sequence from The Ghost in the Shell in which a cyberized man under the control of the Puppet Master looks toward his partner driving frantically toward him, his perception is rendered with scan lines. As such, the cyborg appears as one media platform in a network of platforms, but this is a specific network infrastructure.
In one key sequence in the film, Aramaki covertly sets up video surveillance around a house: he uses what looks like a laptop computer into which cables are plugged, connecting his computer to others and the network, reminding us that this is not an era of wireless connection but one of wires, cables, and diverse modalities of hooking up and jacking in.
What you see may be intercepted, overheard, whether Pure Crystalline Emptiness Of Saturn - Saturn Form Essence - Dissonant Structures (CDr) or accidentally. As such, when you perceive in scan lines, your perceptual world is open or exposed to other media platforms. The response to this situation of disjunctive synthesis can go in one of two directions.
On the one hand, it can lead to paranoid defensive formation in which you are caught up in a unending game of build- ing new forms of protection, to assure that your shell is not breached, your brain not hacked, your memories not stolen or damaged.
This is where personal and national sovereignty are forced into collusion in a paranoid escalation of preemptive measures in a world where secu- rity is simply more insecurity.
On the other hand, a world in which everything and everyone becomes a disembodied ego sealed within layer upon layer of protective barriers is ultimately unsustainable, for it effectively eliminates the self that it is allegedly designed to preserve. In response, at some point, like the Major and Puppet Master, you will have to run the risk of exposure to the network and of losing yourself to survive.
Here a distinction between the conscious subject and the experiential self becomes critical, and the experience of the scan line potentially affords a different orientation. Rather than being construed as an invasion of your consciousness by another consciousness, the scan line implies feeling the world, and the world feeling toward you.
This experience of the scan lines brings us to the third point: the scan line is not contained within any media platform. It is the material residue of platforms building with each other.
In this respect, the scan line is important precisely because it does not lead toward the blur or stain, which tends to sustain an idealist or psychologistic relationship of the self to media, which claims that media touch the subject there where its perception becomes blurred and troubled.
The scan line is not in the brain or in the object, but in the world, of the media world. From The Ghost in the Shell. The scan line is not confined to the screen, to cyborg perception, or cyberscapes.
In effect, the city has become cyberized and cyberizing. The experience is one of building a specific infrastructure and a specific self simultaneously. The human now appears as one media platform among others, as a mode of tem- porality that is only experienced when interlaced with another. Consequently, gender trouble, for instance, feels at once displaced onto and displaced by cyborg trouble. Yet there may also be a challenge here: the logic of the scan line invites us to look at the implications of disjunctive syn- thesis, which builds received forms of alterity together with electronic or digital information entities.
The female cyborg would not entail the blurring of distinctions between woman and machine but exists as the specific rate or frequency of an interlacing. The interlacing of perception and cityscape takes on the temporal rhythm of encounter, which is, in fact, her.
Its cyborg world implies an infrastructure that today rarely attracts attention despite its persistence alongside wireless networks, an infrastructure of cables and camcorders, of consoles plugged into televisions and computers. From the early s, production of animation in Japan at once boomed and became more differentiated in terms of its markets, for- mats, and genres. In fact, such anime might well be considered the new media form par excellence of s Japan, anticipating its surge to global popularity in the s.
OVAs in particular played an important role in expanding the media purvey of animation. They not only created a relay between animated films for theatrical release and animated television series but also generated new circuits of distribution and new modes of watching. More important, it was in the context of such animation that the scan line came to the fore.
As animators found new markets and new budgets for release directly to video, they began using video or camcorder footage to enhance both the realism of effects and the media quality of animation, to produce darker, more conceptual, and more sexually explicit fare. It explores the coemergence of self and infrastructure, the distribution that generates the distinction of self and network and is prolonged by it.
NOTES 1. Hans Ulrich Gumbrechts and K. Ludwig Pfeiffer, 83— Stanford, Calif. My argument is not entirely different from hers in that I initially emphasize how such effects seem to generate a disembodied subject, and yet, because I am not treating natural perception as a baseline, I tend to think in terms of historical configurations of media infrastructure and their potentiality.
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The third album called The True Meaning of Golgotha is more diverse musically and incorporates industrial and folk influences plus vocals. See also: Kubik, Henry. Contemptus Mundi Kanashibari Megaloschemos with Abattoir. Satori was formed in the early 's. At some point, Dave Kirby was also a member. Early works were noisy and industrial.
It was on their later efforts listed that they developed a dark, opressive ambient style. See also: PessaryKirby Dave.
Bill Laswell collaborates on one track. Varied melodic and sequenced electronics, sometimes with relaxed rhythms. II Bright, droning Ambient. Satsuma Nightmare is a Leicester-based collective of musicians formed circa by Alan Stocker synths and Bill Henderson guitar and synths.
Right from the beginning they sought to recreate the classic sound of German analogue Electronic Music known today as the Berlin School. Their biggest inspiration was and remains to this day the music of Tangerine Dreamas is quite obvious from their name. They played some live gigs in the early 's, which were definitely recorded but supposedly not released in any form. Jon Humphries arrived with his guitar playing but left as soon as However, the duo continued until when they decided to call it quits and devote themselves to other commitments.
In the 's, the group returned, having sold all of their analogue gear and, switching to the then modern digital equipment, released a few tapes. This time, however, the line up included only Stocker and a new guitarist Jon Angell.
Satsuma Nightmare still exists as ofrecording music, some of which is available for downloading. Saturn Form Essence Ukraine.
Dark Space. Most of the time fairly simplistic, with interesting bits here and there. Apart from the listed solo releases, there's plenty of splits with other artists as well. Hypnotic, folky, semi-acoustic Ritual Ambient. Analog synth tracks with a gritty, cosmic and raw sound.
Sometimes cinematic and mysterious. Saturn 's Daughter USA. Long tracks with soft, warm drones and pads. See also: Christoff, Jordan. Sergey Saty is a Dark Ambient artist from Russia. Rainer Sauer was born in and has been working in EM continuously since the late 's.
See also: Velvet UniverseGavand Art. Unfortunately, it seems that the only recorded output of Sauvageau was this avant-garde album done in collaboration with poet and lyricist Claude Peloquin. As a consequence, Peloquin 's voice is everywhere. However, if you don't pay attention to the lyrics, there's some nice stuff going on, mostly avant-garde and experimental, but also very prog and kraut-like as on the mesmerizing "Monseur l'Indien" with its Picture Music -like spacey synth soloing.
Truly ahead of its time. Paul Sauvanet was born in He received formal music education at the conservatories of Bordeaux and Paris. A group led by Kerry Leimer. Mostly Eno -like ambience with some weird touches like various sampled noises, looped rhythms and so on.
See also: Leimer, KerryRea, Dennis. Varied electronic artist real name - Davide Salvati. On Abissohe goes the experimental way, blending a lot of strange, often, sampled rhythms with some really weird, lof-fi and noisy textures and repeating melodies. Best track: "Soffio del Cielo" - really nice EM, this one. Dreamy, sci-fi-like Electronic Music, mostly beatless and flowing.
Music composed by P. Senneville and O. Touissant, arranged and performed by Roland Romanelli. In the style of Space. See also: Romanellli, RolandSpace.
Sizewell features nice and varied EM, mostly of ambient nature, inspired by and based on the artists' visits to a few power stations. Igor Savin is mostly known for his YU Disco Express album from that mixed funky disco sound with Balkan motifs, as well as from his work for television, radio and theatre plays. However, he also released this little-known obscure ambient work played on analogue synthesizers. Rich analog sounds, some techno-influenced, some strictly cosmic.
Some tracks make use of heavy feedback. Pascal Savy is a French artist currently residing in London. He later worked as an ambient producer and musician.
The first album has some techno influences. The cassette is supposed to be completely ambient. Sawazki, Kirill Russia. Dullu Discomorpher Zum Ewigen Licht Kirill Sawazki Zavadskiy is a Russian musician born in in Omsk. He is mostly known for his spacesynth music but works also in other genres. Landschaften und Prozesse reflects his admiration for Kraftwerk 's music. Ambient music combining string section, clarinet, oboe, processed field recordings and synthesizers.
Elori Saxl is a Brooklyn-based artist. This artist real name - Sayer Seely mixes traditional Electronic Music with more modern trends. Sblendorio, Andrew USA. Alive At the Macartovin SF. Diverse experimental artist. Only his ambient or EM-related works will be listed. Legendary Polish progressive rock band also a backing band for Czeslaw Niemen during the 's.
Josef Skrzek is responsible for some of their finest electronic moments that are scattered throughout their discography and are especially prominent on this album. See also: Skrzek, JosefNiemen, Czeslaw. Naif Music Comunicare Evangelum Secundum Performed with almost no use of sequencers. The first album is currently available only for those who order directly from the author.
Comunicare is much more sequencer-based, although not in typical Berlin School mode, but in a very personal way. This album is much more active and not so "quiet". Spanish synthesist born in and member of AT-Mooss. Berlin School sequential electronics. Very good, indeed. Scab doesn't simply copy the classic Tangerine Dream sound, but adds his own sounds and leaves enough space for experimentation. New York-based composer. On Desire Loopshe created a set of varied electronic tracks combining analog synths and some acoustic instruments.
Most of these are quite moody and of ambient nature. A project of Berlin-based modular synth artist Stephan Blachnik. Lulling, sequencer-based, melodic, hypnotic Stefano Scala is a Tribal Ambient artist from Milano.
Some of his works are supposed to be completely or almost completely acoustic utilizing instruments such as bells, percussion, field recordings, didgeridoo and so onbut he also uses electronics extensively. His style includes elements of glitch, IDM and Ambient. Of special interest is "Antartika" from Winterclearly inspired by Vangelis.
Scamall is Polish musician Jakub Kmiec Polarisdoing more experimental, ambient stuff. Electronic project of Alexander Girin with an ambient, cosmic sound based on floating synthesizers, analog pulsations and even a bit of Floyd ian guitar. Randolf Scand changed his cosmic address on Thank you for you excellent music and your support, my friend! You will be missed. See also: Astrovia. His solo album Solas combines cut-up collages and the louder, harsher side of grime with melodic ambient EM.
Long-standing project of Robin Rimbaud. The Great Crater is a nice entry into the Ambient genre. Footfalls is another interesting work. Steve Schroyder 's ex- Tangerine Dream project formed in and disbanded in Magical Mind features never-before-heard recordings from The line-up features Gene Gross who would later form part of the duo Augenstern and a few other, more obscure names.
Trippy electronic krautrock. See also: Schroyder, SteveAugenstern. Ambient music from this ex-member of post-punk group The Danse Society.
Bloomington, Indiana-based experimental musician who often opts for more extreme, harsher and noisier forms of artistic expression. Dimensional Synthesishowever, will certainly be of interest to fans of Prog EM. Listening to all the slow arpeggios, especially on "Dimension ", you sometimes even get a sort of an "early Software " feeling. Scarterfield, Keith USA. Scattered Order Australia. Pioneering Australian post-punk band formed in Scattered Purgatory Taiwan.
Folky drone band from Taiwan. On their release, they decided to go the synth way and it was a fantastic decision. Sceptre of the Fading Dawn Australia. Doomy, melancholic ambient compositions with a touch of dungeon synth. Supposedly, the same style as his work with Schulze on Trance Appeal.
UK-born artist of Polish-Canadian origin. He is sort of a disciple of Brian Enohaving worked with the ambient master in the 's. As a soloist, he is a multi-disciplinary artist working in such genres as turntablism, drone, field recordings, musique concrete, sound collage and more. There are also some ambient works that I will try to list here. His discography is huge, so further investigation is needed. Schaefer, Peter Germany. German synthesist. See also: Farn, PeteF.
Schafer, Theodore USA. Ambient artist from Ann Arbor who is also part of the Cestine duo. Relaxing sound with just a touch of neo-classical. Schaltkreis Wassermann Switzerland. A pioneering electronic duo of Stella and PJ Wassermann founded in Their album Psychotron had considerable success among synth fans. Notes See also: Wassermann, Peter J. Schat, Arjen Netherlands.
Arjen Schat is a diverse Dutch composer who is especially fond of complex sequencer patterns ala Berlin School and ambient synth soundscapes. Schauer, Jakob Austria. Antlitz Gaia 's Birth Ambient synth music with an electroacoustic touch.
I like how the music on Gaia 's Birth is dramatic, as well as how it is physical, especially on "Gaia's Theme", with its climax and release. Seriously talented guy. Highly recommended. Schedel, Gerhard Germany. Attenti al Treno! Munich-born artist b. He played synthesizers with a rock group as early as and began recording solo electronic compositions around that time.
At the end of the 's, he got interested in multimedia techniques, animation and computer graphics. See also : Ampzilla's Delight. Schedelvreter Netherlands. Side project of Danny Bosten, the mastermind behind minimal synth "band" Das Ding.
This one here is more experimental and has a weird horror synth vibe to it. Still rather minimal, though. Scheich in China Germany. Hamburg-based project in Experimental vein. Mostly rather minimal, noisy and dark sound here.
See also: Rau, AlsenEsmark. Everyday's Life Everybody's Waiting Luca Scherani is an Italian keyboardist who on Everyday's Life mixes Electronic Music with a bit of jazz fusion and progressive rock. A cast of guest musicians and a female vocalist support Luca in this quest. Nitemusik Between the Lines Scherer, Peter Switzerland. Sort of meditative, hypnotic sound with an ethnic touch. Scherpenzeel, Ton Netherlands.
Kayak member. These albums contain Electronic Music and are of interest. The second one was released under the project name "Orion". There was an earlier album, released way back incalled Le Carnaval des Animaux. Scherzinger, Dieter Switzerland. Floating new agey synths. Sometimes with a Vangelis feel. Schiano di Lombo, Joseph France. Paris-based keyboardist and multi-disciplinary artist. Melodic compositions with electric pianos and synths.
Italian guitar player and composer who started his career as a member of several jazz bands. Nowadays he runs two music schools in Milan. He has composed some purely electronic works, as EM is one of his main spheres of interest.
Alex Schiavi also likes to combine his electric guitar playing with electronic sequences and rhythms. Symphonic progressive electronics with occasional guitar licks. Here, synthesists and keyboard players Fuhrs and Frohling are aided by the great drumming from Schicke. Their albums were released on the German Brain label.
After the album, Schicke left, and the duo continued to release albums in similar vein. His musical approach is similar to Inventions For Electric Guitar by Manuel Goettsching which means trippy, echoey guitarscapes with tons of electronic processing, sometimes creating sequencer-like looping structures.
Samtvogel is a rare debut released privately as a limited edition, Uberfallig is his most commonly encountered work. Schiefnetter, Roland Germany. In the EM world, he is marked by his collaboration with Klaus Schulze at the beginning of the 21st Century.
Die Einlassmusik is a series of ambient CD's sold during his tours. Nice, melodic, accessible sound with no beats to speak of for the most part. Early cassette by Olaf Schirm aka Symboter.
Aqua Mediterranea Dunas Weird mixture of disco and Cluster -like Prog EM wackyness. Sort of an early incarnation of Heldon with Richard Pinhas as main man.
See also: Pinhas, RichardHeldon. With the covers of their CD's following the pattern established by Neu! Schlammpeitziger is a project of Jo Zimmermann, Cologne-based artist who uses casios, digital and analog electronics to craft his melodic compositions that sometimes sound like an updated version of Cluster with a dose of IDM tossed in.
Eric Schlappi is an experimental synthesizer artist from Tucson. The music is still very sharp, mainly because of the sounds used, but is definitely moving in the progressive direction.
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