The sound of music is a speck of electromagnetic energy that can be seen or heard, amplified or decoded. It’s an abstract concept that’s still largely misunderstood. It’s not so much that the sound of music does not exist, as that the concept of sound has not yet been fully understood. Music is physically present, but not so much that it’s not really alive. “Music,” the term used to describe electronic music, is often used to describe the sound of bookshelf music. “Music’ is the tangible sound of music playing in your headphones.”Music” is something you hear in your ear. Essentially, music is a physical world, and there’s no such thing as music.
A similarly worded concept can be found in the sound of “The Sound Of Music”, a new album by the Boston electronic duo “Maneuvering Themes & Modes of Production”. The album was recorded with the assistance of a range of virtual environments, and uses a host of different audio techniques to create a soundscape that is both layered and sound-based.
The record’s opening track, “A, B, C,” is comprised of a series of discrete samples, each of which has a unique length and frequency. As the samples drift past one another, they are gradually layered together until they begin to overlap with each other. After several minutes of this, the sound fades and the loops coalesce into a single continuous mark.
The final track, “A, B, C, D” is comprised of two separate samples, each of which has a different length and frequency. The first sample, at the beginning of the track, is made up of a low-pitched whistle and then fades into a series of creaks, clicks, and clicks. The second sample, at the end of the track, is made up of a low-pitched whistle and then fades into a series of creaks, clicks, and clicks. It’s the only time where “The Sound Of Music” is concerned with the use of automation.
The use of virtual environments allows “The Sound Of Music” to create a sense of isolation that is absent in the physical world. The record is more interested in the forcefulness of sound than the details of its development.