by Graham Booth
Faultlines is a large-scale performance piece for laptop ensemble which explores the aesthetics of agency when passing simple sound-generation parameters between players. A highly restricted sound-world is presented, where ownership of sounds is indicated by pitch rather than a fixed spatial position (as would traditionally be the case). The resulting piece marks out contrasting sections of group order and individual freedom, using simple methods of solo and group gestural control to harness human networking capabilities as well as those provided by technology. The piece was first performed with the Huddersfield Experimental Laptop Orchestra at the GEMdays festival, University of Huddersfield on 29th January 2009.
The piece requires a group of twenty laptop players using Apple MacIntosh laptops, each running a custom-designed software application. Network communication is enabled by a standard 54Mbps 801.11g wireless access point. No prior playing experience is necessary provided that the piece can be work-shopped in full before the concert. During performance, players are situated in amongst the audience, distributed equally around a established central position.
Full materials for realising the piece are provided here:
- Faultlines application v1.0 for Apple Mac (coming soon)
- Full Performance Instructions and Score available here
- Audio archive of the GEMdays performance available here
(This above recording represents a stereo live recording of the piece in performance and is provided only to give a feel for the sonic character and structure of the piece. The key spatial characteristics of the piece can only be realised in performance.)