Steve Peters – Filtered Light (Chamber Music 4) (Dragon’s Eye Recordings)

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From an empty art museum in New Mexico, Seattle sound artist Steve Peters managed to extract fourteen frequencies between 70Hz and 3Hz in a single, hour-long recording. The hour was divided into over thirty segments and then recombined for this, one of the many sets of possible combinations that could have derived from the original four channel installation. No people were present for the recording. The only sounds are those that incidental to the building and have been processed and equalized to obtain the tones represented here on this limited run CD-R.

The idea that you could take one room’ resonance and relocate it to your own or anyone else’ is one that I’ve always loved and this could very well be the height of such a concept. Nothing but the room’ ambience, processed and re-programmed to highlight your own room’ surrounding sounds. Spooky resonance is interwoven with clear, wavering tones that feel strange but almost right when sat against each other. At times they sound anything but organic, as much as the label’ original idea for the project would have you believe. The overall feel of this recorded room is cold, white and empty with maybe a shadow of light-blue moonlight in the furthermost corner. Its gives the sense of making slightly disconcerted about being in your own space, as if the original building’ secret ghosts, its endless tales of long-disappeared builders, visitors and occupiers might have carried through onto disc. It is, of course, recommended for low playback so that any such spirits might not bet given a chance to haunt the corners of your own room. Just the space between your ears and the sound.

Joel Hedrick

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