Sing … Singe: vocal detritus

New ways to sing invite disembodied voices. Vocal detritus is ripe for art-making. The very word “singe” becomes another voice, another word. To listen well or deeply, one should vocalize together in the same vibrational space, suggests radio artist Gregory Whitehead.

 


 

KATHY KENNEDY

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“This trace of a voice suggesting the word ‘singe’ is produced with absolutely no effects,” the performer mentions. It yields a lament, a beckoning to listen deep inside the voice. What is applied to the voice is breath, tone: it’s menacing and yet euphoric as singing can be. [2014]

 


 

DANIELA CASCELLA

“I hope it chimes in with your project,” whispers the London-based Italian writer of sound. And we can hear it voiced, an “R” is added. It becomes a text to be partly spoken, peeled off the page, but never quite so, a text from memory and a text that is read and spoken inside your head, hence the rhythm which is never entirely flowing.

… sing, singe, sing, singe, sing, singe, sing, singe, voice and burn, sing, singe, voice, burn, voice and burn, sing and singe are… r, are r, are, r, add r, sing, singe, singer, sing, singe, Singer, the name of the sowing machine grandmother used to have in the corner of her room, its rhythmic mechanical sounds sowing memories together, now faster, now slower, faster, slower, again, a pedal a wheel and a needle, pedal wheel and needle, vertical two-phased sounds with circular continuum of sounds, of metal and wood the Singer was made of, through years and years of hum and years and years of work, wood and metal with thread, until, in the end, grandma gone, the Singer dismantled, the metal became a makeshift music stand for songs, the wood was burned, singed, metal into sing and wood into singe, sing and singe together in this thread of words, again, and before this, again, sing, singe, Singer, sing, singe, Singer … [2014]

 


 

CHRISTOPHER DeLAURENTI

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“Remnants stitched together make something new,” says the artist of the offspring of his love affair with sound. They offer ethereal, questionable ‘definitions’ or expectations of what is music, but also, what is space, tone, electricity, recording and ultimately ‘song.’ Silences Normalized From The Complete Organ Works Of Olivier Messiaen Disc 2 is culled from a single disc found in one of the many collections of organ works by the renowned French composer.

The work amplifies the room tone and resulting ambiance within a cavernous church. All of the audible music is removed and the remnants are stitched together to reveal the inner workings of an organ and its environment, including residual tones, traffic, stray speech and tiny electrical anomalies dependent on the analog (line hum, static) as well as the digital soundscape (dither, bit depth).

Formerly disdained elements of field recording such as hiss, rumble, and obvious edits reveal an otherwise overlooked soundscape. DeLaurenti, inspired by Luigi Nono, says a listener can seek to find silence full of voices. [2014]

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