On Noise Floor: Between Tinnitus and Raw Data

As technology progresses, so too does the ability to manipulate, arrange and essentially “make” music on the various forms of technological advances, all the while employing forms of glitch. Whether it is the scratch of a record, skip of a CD or beep of a computer, glitches can be used to add another layer to music, or be an entire symphony in itself. The dissension comes in when music “purists” insist that what is generated by a computer simply cannot be music, and that all sounds outside their scope of music are just “noise”. The irony comes in when it becomes evident that while as technology advances in pursuit of perfect transmission, it is also simultaneously utilized to step outside that perfect channel of transmission and instead incorporate noise, rather than minimize it. As early as sound was transmitted through telephones, radios and eventually records, there were those who saw opportunity in the apparent failings of the technology and manipulated these glitched sounds for both theoretical analysis, and musical authorship. As the processing, encoding and amplification of music became more advanced so too did the sound quality, in that it was more pure and noiseless. However, these advances also allowed the avant-garde, glitch and bold artist a more diverse set of tools to manipulate and make music. So, blessed is the artist that is bold and pushes the boundaries for they are the ones that find true revolution. Whether it is Lou Reed or some kid in his mom’s basement on a computer messing with a computer program, innovation is born from not just thinking outside the box, but pursuing it. The next advance is just a glitch away.

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2 thoughts on “On Noise Floor: Between Tinnitus and Raw Data

  1. Nice thorough synopsis of what reading was about. I also liked at the end how you praise the artists that are willing to break the mold of what is considered normal sound production and challenge the norms through glitch. I like the positive light you shined on the future of sound glitching as art.

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  2. The quote that I found particularly interesting was, “So, blessed is the artist that is bold and pushes the boundaries for they are the ones that find true revolution”. I like it because of how true it is.

    Like

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