"An Echo of Nothing"

Posted 20 June 2015, 15:56

Issue three of the online journal Reductive, published June 2015, contains an article by Jesse Goin called An Echo of Nothing. It is an exploration of the concept for which he uses the Japanese term chikaku chinmoku, which he defines as “near-silence, or reticent-silence.” After talking about the music of Lance Austin Olsen & Jamie Drouin, Haptic, and Daniel Jones, he discusses three artists who for him “imbue near-silence with pitches and tones, ligatures of sine waves, oscillations arising from the ground of emptiness,” including David Papapostolou, Ryoko Akama and myself.

Of ~60 Hz, Goin’s writes

[…] the composer undergirds the three compositions with frequencies that pervade the public grid, a thrum super-saturating our world sufficiently so as to make it (optionally) beneath our notice. By tuning his work to this frequency, Seidel creates an environment in which our attention can toggle between attending to the waves, or riding them like the breath. Remarkably warm and immersive, Seidel’s frequencies are braided in such a way as to allow the mind to settle into a borderland between attention and diffusion. For all its activity (relative to, say [Haptic’s] Abeyance) – the binaural beating, the rising and falling – Seidel’s work continually returns to a serene baseline. It makes sense, as divergent as their materials may be, that Seidel is a label-mate of composer Jurg Frey.

Many thanks to Jesse Goin for his thoughtful and appreciative review, and for discussing my work in conjunction with this particular group of composers.