Mittwoch, 23. Oktober 2013

Two ways to get into Stockhausen's head

Snippets of the original session tapes from when Stockhausen recorded the 12-year-old boy treble Josef Protschka whose voice would form such a central part of Stockhausen's electronic/electro-acoustic masterpiece Gesang der Jünglinge. The recordings were made at the composer's Cologne studio in 1955 and 1956. These notes/pitches/frequencies are not part of the western system, they're microtonal and complex ... composed by Stockhausen using serial techniques. These tapes have been heard by only a handful of people and they certainly have never been broadcast anywhere in the world, ever!

Sean Williams' reconstruction of Stockhausen's equipment

Astonishingly, Sean has managed to reconstruct Stockhausen's original gear through a combination of technical ingenuity and a spot of eBay-ing, and has made this old/new set-up make some of the noises that Stockhausen produced in Gesang. Compare Sean's version of those seductive, transcendent swarms of impulses at the start of the piece with Stockhausen's.