wh263 C.P. McDill – Various Experiments

C.P. McDill

A compilation of recent sound experiments by C.P. McDill that fall outside of the style of his main recording projects.

Download the whole album as a zip file or click here for more downloading and streaming options.

These tracks are available as flac and vbr mp3.
They are Creative Commons licensed by-nc-sa

About the album:
“For the past year and a half, I’ve been recording many sound experiments that don’t fit in with my usual stuff. I can to some degree credit this to an ongoing creative challenge project called Disquiet Junto, which has gathered a large community of experimentalists over at Soundcloud (soundcloud.com/groups/disquiet-junto/). Each such piece is noted below.

In addition to the work I did with Junto, there were numerous experiments I made while getting familiarized with the possibilities of newly acquired musical instruments or effects hardware. Revisiting the tracks I’ve done in this time, I selected a number of them that I feel are worth compiling into a proper album, a nice way to showcase the diverse ways I’ve been fooling around with music and noises.

In a manner of speaking, this album is a sequel to Covert Ecology, which brings together some experiments I did 20 years ago, my oldest surviving recordings.

As a departure from my usual approach to presenting my work, I’m going to explain as best I can what I’ve done in each track:

01 Drone-a-gram [03:16] — Junto. The word “drone” was translated to morse code, then made into beats. A bassier, more resonant beat is the dash, and a punchier beat with a short decay is the dot. To represent the spaces I used a short hiss (aerosol spray can). The accompanying drones were made from a variety of sound sources and processes.

02 Revenge of the Lawn [03:27] — Junto. A field recording with some processed sounds mixed in. The site of the field recording in this track was a garden near Cape Cod on a warm day, standing by the entrance of a greenhouse, where a lot of flies were buzzing nearby.

03 Shed Inhibitions [03:56] — From a Junto assignment to make music from junk. For this project I used a very dull wood-saw, a rusted compass saw, a scrap of sheet-metal, and an empty plastic bottle. The parts were recorded right in the shed with my trusty Tascam DR-05 Linear PCM Recorder. No effects were applied.

04 Trunk Call From Byzantium [03:28] — Junto. Schoenhut toy piano, recorded via a circuit-bent vintage telephone handset used as a microphone, passing through a Fender Hello Kitty portable practice amp (set on overdrive), then into a Tascam DR-05. The resulting wav file was further degraded by conversion to an 8kbps mp3, then back to a wav. Then I messed around with the playback speed and pitch of the file. Mixed into this is another track of the Schoenhut recorded as above, un-degraded and at normal speed, with delay effect added.

05 2 in the Bush [02:38] – Junto. For this recording I used a recording of nightingales and a recording of a minor chord progression. First I vocoded the chord progression against the birdsong, and slowed the resulting recording down. Then I took snippets of the birdsong and ran it through ixi’s Noiser, and added some of the results of that into the mix.

The source material for this track was provided from these two samples:

*Nightingale song 2

06 Half Beasts and Half Devils [04:43] — Junto. I took a very brief sample from a Librivox (public domain) reading of “The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin” and processed the hell out of it in a variety of ways and layered it all together.

07 Uchezaji [03:44] — One day I tried to run my Korg Kaossilator through my Korg Monotron, using the latter as a filter. After a brief bit of fooling around, this recording was a result. The title is in fact Swahili for “fooling around.” (see music video)

08 Tripitaka [03:00] — Junto. This was made from three samples, layered with each other in different ways: 1) A field recording I made of a swarm of darkling beetles crawling around and chewing on rotting fruit, 2) A loop I made on a Korg Kaossilator, 3) A short chord progression on a toy piano, heavily effected.

09 Fog on Rails [03:29] — From a Junto challenge, “to create a track using as source material only two samples: a train whistle and a fog horn.” Thus, all sounds on this track are processed strictly from these two samples:
* Fog horn sample by Schaarsen: freesound.org/people/schaarsen/sounds/69663/
* Train whistle sample by Ecodios: freesound.org/people/ecodios/sounds/119963/

10 Half Empty [01:38] — Junto. This track was a single-session live recording of “glass harp” sounds (rubbing the rims of wet wine glasses) with effects applied in the live recording. No post-processing effects used in this.

11 Iced Coffee [04:16] — Junto. All sounds in this track are processed from a source recording of ice tumbling in a glass. I don’t recall what methods I used to get these results.

12 Coup de Soleil [08:12] — The first part of this track was made using an ebow on an antique zither, recorded outdoors. Several tracks were made and layered, some of which were given a bit of effects processing. The second part was an electric violin played pizzicato style with a guitar pick, the output of which was channeled through a multi-effects processor.

Download the whole album as a zip file or click here for more downloading and streaming options.