Communauté électroacoustique canadienne
Canadian Electroacoustic Community
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Works » By Title » H » HeatNoise (11:20 / 1987)

Bruno Degazio

for percussion and tape

HeatNoise is a fantasy on the inter-relationship of signal and noise, meaning and error, chaos and order. Noise — taken broadly and metaphorically as the absence of meaning — and the emergence of meaning from noise is presented with sounds synthesized by means of the same fractal process used to generate the structure of the work; with the noisy sounds of speech, the sibilants, plosives and fricatives without which language would be unintelligible; with radio transmissions, including Neil Armstrong’s famous non sequitur at the first moon landing; and with sounds, musical and otherwise, that employ noise in various ways to communicate a message.

Out of the opening chaos through the progressively greater disturbances of the underlying order, noise overwhelms meaning until we arrive at the place where the lost messages end — the radio transmissions that were never received, the cries for help that were never heard, the final gasps of those who died alone… Curiously enough, just as researchers in information theory found that indelicate four letter words were the first to emerge from the chaos of random letter orderings, so here we discover that the last sound to be heard as the chaos engulfs us is not profanity but… rock music.

HeatNoise is one of a series of algorithmic compositions applying principles of fractal geometry to music. The structural foundation for the work is an extended rhythmic figure generated by the fractal equation used to describe errors due to thermal noise encountered in data transmission.

  • Studio: Private studio
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