The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

September 1, 2007

Ground Plain

Smaller crystal radio (double-tap single coil) fed directly into the mike
input of my laptop, then filtered with CoolEdit. Nothing but ground hum
and static was picked up; these were modified into a semblance of ontol-
ogy. Clearly there are impedance mismatches at work and ground problems
resulting from the general radiation spewing of the laptop. The result as
usual is interesting soundwork, but the coiling itself, running the power
grid into and out of the earth, conjures an impossible mythos; this 60-
cycle would already be otherwise throughout most of Europe, half of Japan
for example.

It occurs to me that someone or some thing is speaking just around the
corner, or coroner, given the propensity of the dead to inhabit anything
but the clear evidence of the living. So there's plenty of room for a
poetics of ground-space grid-space, provided both of them are at least
somewhat subservient to the corporate powers that provide the thrumming in
the first place.

You know, the whole world is electrified, humming along on whatever funda-
mentals occur from region to region - and their respective additions, sub-
tractions, etc., pretty Lissajous figures all.

So we've joined the fish with their electric organs, not to mention the
effects of insect wings on very low frequency radio reception - such
effects perhaps on each other as well.

Still, given the ground and ground plane and hum's ubiquity, we're mostly
listening to ourselves listening to ourselves. The 'said' rides the
current like obscene outriggers, even though it's the riding we care for
as we face one another over any distance greater than a few meters. And
perhaps even less than that distance as well.

Shadow sounds

Loose-coupled crystal radio fed into 96hz Zoom H2 recorder; the .wavs
were then processed for subterranean information. Processing included
stretching 400%, notch filtering to eliminate 60hz, hard limiting and
normalizing, noise or signal elimination, added echo. I approached
dreams. There was enough headroom in the 96hz signal to embrace them.

Soon we will stretch lightning, thunder; then we will hear the proper
mapping of the earth. Think of the instantaneity of a virtual particle
spread into a packet of unknown shape, carrying the shadows of the
cosmos themselves. In the meantime we have the following:

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