Inferno der Stille

Programme Note

Inferno der Stille was comissioned by Folkmar Hein and created at the Center for Art and Media Technology Karlsruhe (ZKM) and in the Electronic Studio of the Technical University Berlin. Inferno der Stille ( inferno of silence ) is the first 8-channel piece I ever created. With its 8-channels 24-bit resolution and 48-Khz sampling rate it represents a wonderful natural sound quality. The sounds were processed direct into an 8-channel sound file format. With this technique sound grains and particles can be placed in various locations of the 8-channels. Longer sounds perform movements in space and these movements are transposed through during the synthesis process of the piece.
The result of this technique creates a multiphase response in space, similar to multiple reflections of a real wall. The source sample is take from the Introitus of Mozarts Requiem. Some metal sounds are used as well. Those timbres are developed with the physical model software Genesis created by ACROE-CLIPS in Grenoble. All the sounds were then processed with algorithmic structures using recursive techniques. That means that sound particles are written into a soundfile performing a specific pitch, duration, dynamic, envelope and time structure. The resulting soundfile is used as a source for the next generation of processes while the parameter of pitch, duration, dynamic, envelopes and time remain the same. This technique creates sounds of self similar "Gestalt" which appear in the beginning of the soundfile in a very high density. The soundfile has something in common with a fugato while a continuous tendency remains typical: usually pitch and the density of events are decreasing. The interesting about this structures is the harmonic fields and the phrases these events create. Sometimes it reminds at isorythmic motets with different harmonic techniques.
It is very impressive for me to realise what these restructuring processes can lead to. How the phrases of the Requiem are modified into something total different but which is still dependent of the quality of the sources. This restructuring process can be seen as a technique to illuminate and enhance very small field of a timbre or harmony in a fast flowing structure. It is like taking a microscope to a sound and then painting with the "Gestalt" found with the microscope. This process has a similarity to rebuilding a new building out bricks taken from an older one.

Beside my own programs the programming languages Common Lisp Music of William Schottstaedt and Common Music of Heinrich Taube were used.