AUDISTRY was conceived and constructed combining Shawn Clement’s deep Other-Worldly cinematic orchestral music and signature guitar sound, with the genre-mashing production aesthetic of music producer Audnoyz (Steve Thomas). German music technology journalist, Joerg Sunderkoetter was first to frame the Audnoyz aesthetic ‘Kopf Kino’ (mind cinema) an aural sojourn for the inner eye. Like experiencing synesthesia, seeing the music, imbued by its multi-referential stylistic cinematic properties.
The twelve tracks that comprise AUDISTRY vary in breadth and depth, speaking to the collaborators cerebral sonic creativity and unique artistic vision. Menacingly dense, this work envelops you in an aural journey, replete with unexpected genre juxtapositions, cinematic soundscapes, stirring orchestra, sublime vocals, and biting guitars. Often in a cacophony of sound, something familiar emerges only to segue to a well-placed Zappa moment of discord. Sometimes frenetically bombastic, sometimes contemplative, this music is always cinematic, evocative and exciting.
Taking several months, the bi-coastal collaboration occurred North of Los Angeles and in suburban Boston, its slicing, dicing, mixing and mangling reaching completion the last of December 2012.
Audistry- The power and dazzle of the New Fusions
The tools available today make composers, dj’s, record producers, and instrumentalists of pretty much everyone. The high school student has access to the sequencing, mixing and mastering products professionals paid dearly for just 10 years ago. They have the advantage of beats and prerecorded parts made by experts. This proletarianizing of sophisticated technology has resulted in an unprecedented ability for the average personto make surprisingly good quality tracks. But what happens when all that gear ends up in the hands of a truly skilled and talented, trained and experienced musical technician? The answer is in Audistry. All the stuff we all have, and then add the hands, ears and mind of real masters. The material in this album is a sensuous treat, made with the combined expansive palettes of Clemistry and Audnoyz. The pieces are evocative and programmatic, conjuring visual images as powerful as the sounds. Not that the work is a Tone Poem in the way of the later Romantic period, when some composers chose to use music to mimic the sounds of other things and thus draw pictures of specific items or events. There is much more latitude for the listener to conjure and create his or her own images, vivid, like a dream in color, but highly individual. This quality provides potential applications of this music to film scoring, exhibit enhancement, choreographing ballet, or just plain sonic imbibing.
There are 12 tracks here. They can be experienced as individual pieces or can be seen as movements in a larger more symphonic work. This is not a symphony in the technical sense where 4 movements of an expected length and style are sequenced, and each follows a classical form. Rather there are multiple frescos that emerge from a single wall, a dozen meditations on different ideas, but all somehow linked.
The first two tracks are edgy and hard, one featuring a jagged piano riff, the other a metal guitar power chord motive. The underpinning is rhythmic and driving, but with much more nuance and constant subtle permutations than could be made with a straight up repetitive drum track. These first tracks stir the urge to dance, but in the way of Stravinsky’s Firebird, with 20th Century Classical orchestrations and punching insistent rhythms, rather than a Pop style 4/4.
The third track, WTF, is both movie music, and modern classical orchestration. Just when you think you might have the album pigeon holed, the next piece sequences effortlessly into a progressive rock tone reminiscent of the great rock show bands like Dream Theater, or Yes. But this is no tribute piece. The sections of the piece could not have been conceived before the breakthroughs that make synthesis of European post modern art music and industrial rock acceptable.
Sometimes you think Bollywood dance styles are about to take over, then the tonescapes and sound paintings of the post Phillip Glass sound world emerge seamlessly from underneath, and you have to change your mind, your perspective. The 4th track, or movement, as I have come to think of the organizational structure, Aud vocalese demonstrates a type of musical CAD, using a slight shift to take a human voice and transform it from waves reminiscent of a lone wolf to a lonely woman. How little manipulation it takes to morph one into the other. How much more alike are these than we might think?
Like all symphonic works, there are places of rest and slower movements. Ray’s Dream provides us with that sensibility in this set of pieces. The orchestrations carry over from the more vigorous Stravinskyesque movements, but the tempo drops a bit, and there is more space.
Fine production adds a tactile element to the work that makes the experience truly visceral. You feel, as well as see and hear. It is not physically possible for music to be multisensory in the most literal sense, but this music makes it seem almost possible.
A democratizing revolution has taken place as elite technology has reached the hands of everyone. The musical material of the centuries and the many cultures of the world come in the same box to be part of the artist’s musical palette as never before. The choices of material are limitless. Beethoven, with all his godlike ideas, could only conceive of them through a small set of instruments. In the same way that teachers are no longer limited by textbooks, but can use all material in the world in their classrooms, so the world comes into the composer’s studio. It is no longer necessary to write with a handful of instruments and styles in mind. Now they are all here at once. This is a mindblowing change without precedent since the printing press. This album demonstrates that revolution in thinking about musical composition. There are no limits to the genres, the rhythms, the instrumentation that can now be combined in the hands of the right musicians. Audistry brings the talent and skills of two extraordinary musical minds to the tools of the masses, that’s why this recording is the new paradigm.
-Dr. Riz (April 2012)