Noise only exists in our minds
From noise to music and back, is it a question of the mind and it’s perspective? It certainly is an experience we recognise in the Genetic Choir work: Many voices that are creating a noise-wall of sound will become more musically distinct purely by the joint effort of singers and audience members to listen more closely or changing their listening position.
A new blogpost on the lovely website everydaylistening.com yesterday describes the “Microtonal Wall” of Tristan Perich. And in the description of it makes the above statement: Noise is something which exists in our minds only – we just can’t keep track of all the different things happening at once, so it becomes “noise”. (whole blogpost is here)
The inspiring thing about this aspect of noise/music when talking about live performance is that it creates a much more reciprocal relationship between performers and listeners when instant composing: Singers of the Genetic Choir discover the music at the same time as their audience does. It is a subtle collaboration of all the ears who are present. And while every individual hears something different with his own set of minds/ears, there is also a shared movement from chaos to clarity (and back, maybe) which we don’t do on our own. When we make music that is ‘noise’ based, this is the most apparent. And it is comparable with the experience of the Microtonal Wall: The audience creates focus and distinction with their listening and the performers react to this – which means that the listeners compose the music together with us.