Byron Westbrook is an artist and composer based in Los Angeles, CA. He works with both music performance and installation formats, with a focus on architectural qualities of sound. While Westbrook’s field recording process has been central for many years to both his composition and installation works, there has yet to be a major release showcasing this aspect of his artistic practice. Ash Internal have rectified this with his new album Mirror Views which features cassette field recordings and “faked” synthesizer binaural environments created from noise and unstable tones. It’s pretty wild.
As a precursor to the album, he’s kindly made a mix for us, which is heavy on the the field recordings and features some Cyclic favourites like BJ Nilsen and Judith Hamman. It really rewards deep and perhaps even horizontal listening.
This is what he has to say about it:
“Part of the inspiration for Mirror Views was to make a work that would replicate a sense of documented time passing in a loosely accurate way, in the spirit of Luc Ferarri’s Presque Rien. The constant thread in this mix is that I’ve compiled works that use field recordings playing mostly in “real time” without a lot of obvious manipulation. Nearly all of the included works also feature an element that reads as tonal which either exists in the recorded environment or layered afterwards. I like the perceived ambiguity of this tonal element from a listening standpoint – the tonal layer often has a way of emerging into the present moment of the listening space, creating tension and obscuring the perception of past vs present.”
Geneva Skeen – Power Trouble (for M.A.) – Universal Building Supply
Martina Lussi – Serrinha Do Alambari Soundwalk (excerpt) – Zenith / Serrinha Do Alambari Soundwalk
BJ Nilsen – Londinium – The Eye of the Microphone
Olivia Block – Mobius Fuse  (excerpt) – Mobius Fuse
Marja Ahti – Rooftop Gardens – Vegetal Negatives
Norman W Long – Big Marsh Soundscape (excerpt, Penthouse Mix) – Big Marsh Soundscape
Michel Redolfi – Death Valley (excerpt) – Desert Tracks
Carver Audain – the archive track 3 – the archive
Annea Lockwood – Iona Island and Marsh – A Sound Map of the Hudson River
Pierre Mariétan – Rose des vents (excerpt) – Rose des vents
Judith Hamann – under/over (excerpt) – Peaks
Mirror Views will be released via Ash International on the 17th of September. You can find it here.