If there is anything I’ve learned over the last 20 years of sound-smithing, it is that we are just trying to get to the core of the art – that art which is determined to get closer to the heart. Whether or not we are using yesterday’s instruments, or tomorrow’s, the goal is the same. This realization has taken me longer to arrive at than any other learned skill, regardless of modern technological advancements. Long-winded and overtly analytical experiments, or what we studio rats simply call ‘tweaking’, helped me to see and HEAR, and return to the real meaning of my work – the heart. The irony. This is the kind of perspective that only time grants.
Music has the ability to get humans to circle around a fire – its sounds stoke the aural, leading to the visual, and still more, the emotional. The relationship between humans and sound is wonderfully complex – especially when we find ways to emulate, manipulate and enhance the soundtrack of our lives with musical instruments. Music is the experience of humans being.
Everything and nothing changed with the birth of my son. What hasn’t changed: the concept of the endless sonic adventure, which seems to occupy my mind most days, while my son and I find ways to relate to each other. The idea that we create sonic vibrations, followed by an often more complex and dynamic reaction, is magical. Blowing bubbles in the bathtub and barking nonsensical words and tones into plastic cups – my son and I play every day. The funny thing is, I never stop being a kid in a sonic candy store. Every seemingly insignificant sound catches my attention, often to the chagrin of the company I keep. Feel free to diagnose the struggle for my focused attention – certainly don’t mistake it for being uninterested or unaware. As sound flies like a baby bird from its proverbial nest into a world of complex harmonic, and spatial, ebb and flow – the baby bird’s flight plan requires real-time, calculated actions and reactions, requiring further actions and reactions, etc… the walkabout of a single sound is an endless story, should you choose to listen.
Thanks to Christopher Willits and Envelop for putting on a great show at Luminary (Expanded):art|tech|music last weekend. Our immersive sound story ‘Into The Dark’ has never looked and sounded better. Coupled with an amber LED-light performance by Alingo Loh, ‘Into The Dark’ literally shined, in lieu of any video images, during the intense ‘fire’ scene. It’s amazing what the imagination conjures up when given the opportunity.
SnowGhost Music is excited to announce that our immersive audio story, ‘Into The Dark’, was selected to be shown at this years’ Luminary (Expanded) art.tech.music show at the Midway in San Francisco this weekend. For those of you in the bay area, please stop by and check it out, along with the rest of the incredible music and art that will be performed and presented at the event. You can watch the trailer for ‘Into The Dark’ here: https://snowghost.com/stories-of-sound/
We had a wonderful time at Playtime 2017 and would like to thank Google for allowing us to share our spatial audio piece ‘Into the Dark’ with the attendees. We were overwhelmed with the turnout and are extremely pleased with the response to the piece, and by the high level of excitement around the concept of immersive audio stories. For those who attended the showings, we handed out gatefold packets that included information about the piece as well as 10 postcard images, each of which represents another supporting story that surfaced while conducting research for the Granite Mountain mining disaster. Butte is one of the more fascinating of the lesser known places that we have visited. It is rich with history and amazing to see what it has become in the 100 years following this event. There are many other stories that we have to tell around ’Into the Dark’ and we plan to release one per week on our site for the next ten weeks in association with the postcard images in the packet. For those of you who weren’t able to attend the live showing, this is a way for you to hear all of the stories and see all of their associated images. Please stop by our ‘Stories of Sound’ page on the site to check out the other stories. Thanks again…there is more to come.
We are excited to announce the upcoming release of our spatial audio content series called ‘SnowGhost Stories of Sound’. This VR content series utilizes audio as the driver of narrative to tell compelling stories in multi-channel spatial sound. Unlike a traditional audiobook or podcast, the SnowGhost experience is designed to transport the listener into the story or scene as if they were actually there. For context, consider the storytelling format of Prairie Home Companion, in which the author or storyteller is able to expand their characters and plot using rich audio content to create a theatrical experience that is much larger than the story’s words. Utilizing the spatial audio format, SnowGhost elevates the audio storytelling experience to a new level. SnowGhost will debut their first episode, ‘Into The Dark’ , at Playtime 2017, Google Play’s annual developer conference. The event will take place October 19th at Envelop, a live spatial audio event space that is located in The Midway in San Francisco’s bourgeoning Dogpatch neighborhood and will be experienced exclusively at Playtime 2017.
Brett Allen, of SnowGhost Music, was honored to serve as the audio engineer for one of Deiter Moebius’ later projects. Recorded at SnowGhost Studio, ’Moebius Story Leidecker, Familiar’ is set for release on October 6th, 2017 and is a collaboration between Jon Leidecker of Negativeland fame, and Deiter Moebius of Cluster. It is an album that explores the juxtaposition between the natural and artificial world and was inspired by a few days of hiking in Glacier National Park, Montana. I grew up listening to a significant number of bands who were directly influenced by the Krautrock bands of the late 60’s and early 70’s. I was born in the early 70’s so it makes sense that I was listening to the next generation of bands that followed suit. Once I realized the origins of influence, I took a trip back in time to explore the forefathers of the avant-garde. Krautrock was a movement that was given it’s ‘name’ in jest by John Peel, and the name stuck. An important fact that should be mentioned by anyone writing about the genre is that Krautrock was originally a form of free art. Krautrock bands gave their records away at free art fairs. It was truly a ‘movement’ of artists, and one that has been hugely influential over a vast and varied spectrum of genres. Kraftwerk is most likely the household name that this generation knows as somehow being connected to the birth of hip hop and sampling via Afrika Bambaataa. Kraftwerk, though brilliant in their own right, was not the first to emerge from this movement. In 1968, the Zodiak Free Arts Lab was created in Berlin by Hans-Joachim Roedelius, and Conrad Schnitzler. Schnitzler was an early member of Tangerine Dream and founder of the band Kluster (Cluster). Schnitzler started Cluster with Deiter Moebius, who sadly passed away in 2015. He left behind an incredible body of work and was still recording new music up until his passing. ‘Vexed’ is equally mesmerizing in audio and video form and can be seen below…