It's Gonna Grain
Instant (early) Steve Reich
Early Steve Reich pieces are for me, very interesting. They explore the phase and rhythmic elements between repeated sounds and/or loops. Also the ideas behind these early pieces were not about pitch
and harmony relationships.
This Ensemble is based on/inspired by "It's Gonna Rain". In that piece, two tape recorders have exactly the same loop. They are started at exactly the same time. Soon (because of slight differences in the mechanisms) the loops go out of phase (they don't repeat at the same time). This produces interesting 'accidents' as the timbral characteristics of the repeated vocal sample, interact. With a bit of encouragement (touching the tape gently) the out of phase sounds turn into cross-rhythms.
That basically is how the piece worked..
classic systems/minimalist/conceptual music.
So this Ensemble, takes this into the digital age. Two granular (Resynth) samplers, are loaded with the same vocal sample . Both samplers have the same modulation controls for Pitch, Speed,
Grain size, Loop start and Loop length.
The 5 Faders, control how much 'pre-programmed' modulation is being sent to the 5 modulation controls. This (for me) makes it more interesting in live situations, as you could have some pitch modulation movement going on and at the same time bring in some movement with the Loop Start position.
3 modulation sources are provided, Ingo Zobel's BZ Divider, A Clist LFO and a self-built, Random Trigger.
Instructions are supplied with the .ens
To play this piece in an authentic way, the changes should be slow and subtle. small changes in fader movement are enough to make the samples go out of phase. To explore the piece
as it was originally heard, move the pitch and speed mod faders. To hear it digitally, bring the other faders into play.
The 5 modulation faders have Resets. the start/stop icon also resets the repetition of the sample.
Quick changes can be brought in by using the snap change module. This also re-sets the faders
View A is the programming view.
View B, is the Performance view.
Len Sasso has also explored Steve Reich ideas in Reaktor, but this ensemble uses different concepts of modulating the samples.
Try it with your own samples. they don't have to be vocal.
All comments/ideas/suggestions are very welcome. I have a few for a possible version 2.
muti-picture play button and faders by Stephen Wierenga and Richard Smith.