First Post & "Industrial Revelations" Analysis

I have tried in the past to maintain a blog and failed. My goal with this blog is to post something interesting every day, be it of my own work, just an idea, or a link to some other artist’s/group’s work. 

The first project I’m going to discuss is an on-going analytical paper focused on Natasha Barrett’s “Industrial Revelations”, an eleven-and-a-half minute electroacoustic composition that is the last cut on her 2002 album Isostasie that I am writing for Ted Coffey’s seminar class here at University of Virginia.

I have been fascinated by the work of Barrett for many years (hearing her piece Racing Through, Racing Unseen on Miniatures Concrétes is what got me interested in acousmatic-style electronic music).

My goal in the analysis is to explore how the piece traverses the areas between the sounds of machines (predominantly trains in the piece), human sounds (voice, residual sounds of human actions), and the sounds of their respective (and at times overlapping) environment (organic, textural sounds).

I am using Pierre Couprie’s EAnalysis program to analyze the structure and source material of the piece. Here’s a screen shot of the analysis in progress:


Another plan is to transcribe the last minute of the piece onto traditional staff notation. I feel that pitched material in acousmatic music is rarely analyzed melodically or harmonically, and that the last minute of this piece is a particularly good candidate to do this with: spatialization is barely existent and all of the sounds have focused pitch centers.

I will be writing the paper through the rest of November.