Experimental Audio Research

Transistor Music

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Another of EAR's irregular series of intriguing one-offs, Transistor Music is actually titled after its flipside. The first track itself, "Interlude (With Apologies to Harrison Birtwistle), makes an interesting reference in its title to another British experimental musician, in this case the Stravinsky- and Varese-influenced classical composer. Boom's own work here eschews classical instrumentation in favor of his own familiar electronic modes, but there's a similar sense of deceptively simple minimalism interspersed with seemingly random quirks and burbles. The shuddering main instrument/rhythm generator sounds like something flanged and then rapidly sped up, a fascinating combination. "Transistor Music," meanwhile, uses ring modulators and tremolo, as noted in its own full title, to set a calmer mood. The basic combination of lead piece, in this case a higher-pitched drone, and varying random tones and keys is at work here, but the effect is slightly more meditative, for all the playfulness and aliens-from-the-1950s mood.

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