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Show #3 im Rückblick: Das ethnografische Ohr

(Übersetzung folgt) Datscha Radio Taipei’s third show went right into the heart of matter with a field recording composition by Gabriele de Seta. Generally, this broadcast on the 15th of February focused on aspects and correlations between the practices of experimental ethnography and listening culture. Our studio guests were be the ethnographer and musician Gabriele de Seta, the Philippine composer Christine Muyco, and Taipei experimental sound art artist Lu Yi (Sound Watch Studio).

Against “pure” field recordings… (Photo by Jeremie Lynn)

Our ensuing conversation took us from a critique of “sonic naturalism” to the role of poetics in ethnography and whether  – and how – it could help us understand a given culture or surrounding (I won’t tell.  You can always listen to the podcast).

Gabriele had brought along with him the Philippine composer professor Christine Muyco and the Taipei artist Lu Yi.

Lu Yi and Christine Muyco

In her career as a long standing composer for voice, field recordings and native as well as Western instruments, Christine has been lately concentrating the issue of invasive species and the environment. Her piece “Pakà” presented a choir of frog sounds  – partly modified…

A talk on frogs and stars (Photo by Jeremie Lynn)

A most touching piece was “Making Stars”, a choir of women’s voices. Muyco explained her compositional methods when she was trying to find these “highest frequencies” to “make” the stars.

All the while, unobtrusively but consistently accentuating the acoustics of our terrace studio was a petite installation by Lu Yi of “Sound Watch”. A light sensor hidden in a vase sent its signals up to a pair of flowers made from silver wire. As soon as the loudness tripped over a certain points a cluster of diodes lightened up at the core of the petals.

Flashes of Flower

Soundwatch Studio is an experimental DIY music project maintained by one of the pioneers of experimental musicin Asia, Fujui Wang and co-producing  assistant manager Lu Yi.  Lu Yi has her roots in teaching and that’s also the reason for her to engage with community work with children, exploring with them new ways of creating (and hacking) music. Lu Yi is an avowed “noise lover” and she brought along two Buddhist “chanting machines”, both modified by sensors that made them susceptible to changes of light. We had a lot of fun while playing around with these sound machines!

Playing with Prayers: Christine Muyco

As an interlude to the scheduled “Imagination Game” two Open Call composers/field recordists were introduced: Uli Wienand from Hamburg, Germany, who had contributed personal field recordings from Togo. And the UK composer Peter Barnard who had submitted a filigrane, radiophonic composition titled “Trajectories”.

What kind of sounds would you hear in the streets?
J. K. imagines a country with eagles in the air

The Imagination Game followed a very simple setup: On several scraps of paper the name of a country was written and then drawn by lot. After each of us had received his or her “imaginary country”, questions were asked as for the sound world of these places. Meanwhile more visitors had arrived, among them J. K. Wang whom I met by chance on a walk close to Bitan and who proved to be an expert on the topic of waste and recycling. As he will be the prospective live guest of Datscha Radio’s last episode, he came to make to introduce himself, and of course, to take part in the game. Another guest was the photographer #Jam, a friend of Lu Yi.

Again, THAVs industrious fairies Lily and Ming Chun helped with logistics. Thank you!

We returned to another round of experimental music with a duet for hacked Buddhist praying machines by Gabriele and Lu Yi.

A concert by de Seta and Lu Yi

By now it was already dark and the flower diodes were flashing excitedly as the instruments whined their intertwined tunes.

Happy listeners at Datscha Radio #3

The last hour of this extensive show was taken up by two longer pieces (with a short but charming chance piece by Uli Wiegand): “Resounding Bangalore”, a 2017 soundscape I made originally in Bangalore, and an extensive composition by the composer Alessio Premoli, better known under his project name “Chelidon Frame”. “Under The Trees Rain Stops Moments Later”, was the beautiful title of this serene and quiet piece that accompanied us out of the broadcast into the night.

This post is also available in: Englisch