Satellites – composition for improvising ensemble

10 08 2012

Home hopping (the harmed homies of the spheres)


“thanks to our complacency and utter ignorance in the face of environmental issues, nuclear cock ups and belligerent pathological greed, the earth has been blown to bits and fucked to the very corners of the universe.

having grabbed a fragment of a sinking ship, you have been drifting across incommensurable expands of the dark matters that make up most the the cold, dark and empty space.”


1. find your patch of land and build a home [long distance call] 4”

choose one of the planets and try hard to make it habitable. find and explore the materials available. explore each individual note, rhythms that you have chosen. try combinations, make patterns, phrases, melody – in keeping with the pace of a sonar/long distance call. make yourself at home by keeping a strong view of the root/formant frequency of the pool of notes you have selected.


2. mix and match [du bout de la langue] 3”

you are mistakenly led to believe the grass is always greener… and your neighbouring planet has got better xmas decorations and coloured garden lights.  to your amazement, they have managed to make their own planet more tacky than your garden. and you want to get into the wonder-fun.

join someone else’s pool and play closely with their tonality and rhythm: respond, counterpart, unite.


3. max and mitch [du bout de la pensée] 4”

so many houses have caught up the coloured lights virus that you find yourself hopping from planet to planet. learning each time the local lingua. so much so that eventually, all those codes get mixed up and you don’t even understand yourself speaking. fragments. nebulous nutrinos.


4. grab your shoes and run [très luisant] 2”

you are so lost that you’d better get back to your root. reach deep down below and find the one tone and strong foundation. latch onto it and hold for your life. slowly start developing interesting rhythms as you concentrate only on this one root note and shift beats or pulses very slowly, in micro-increments.

drums drive the band to a crescendo and mark the end with one final long gong crash that sustains and fades slowly, returning the universe to its natural silence.


© hervé perez, 2010


This piece was composed for the Gated Community, a large improvising ensemble and project initiated by Mick Beck.

Data was collected from NASA and each set of numbers relating to the planets cyclical movements and distances from the Sun was translated into pitch – transposing existing data into frequency / wavelength that is audible. Of course, calculations based on great distances and transposition over so many octaves are only theoretical and cannot relate precisely to actual wavelengths.




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