Upon starting this project, I felt overwhelmed by the amount of freedom I had with regards to it's format. The only guideline I knew I had to follow was that there could be no sense of development between the sounds I used. I knew I had to restrict myself in some way to begin making progress, so I elected to only use audio "sound bites" that began with the letter "h". This then inspired the name of the piece: "eɪtʃ", which is how you pronounce the letter.
Once I had all the samples (6 total) imported into the project, I placed them randomly around the timeline. The only structure here is that the sound objects play one at a time. Here is the "score" for this piece:
To begin, I cut up all of the samples, some more heavily than others as can be seen below:
From this point I approached the task as an exercise in sound processing using audio effects; manipulating and automating plugin parameters to construct a sonically interesting soundscape.
For this specific track, automation was then applied on top of this, which added further movement and dynamic to the sound. I automated the pitch, tremolo depth and rate, and Valhalla space modulator wet/dry mix. Soundtoys' EffectRack was also used, within which Crystalliser and PrimalTap further dynamically mangled the sound. Below is a screenshot with the automation data on the tracks. Various tracks have multiple automation parameters enabled- this ranges from panning to wet/dry mix of effects.
When I heard the other student's pieces, I realised they'd approached the task in super unique ways- and I wanted to introduce a point of difference into mine. To do so, I made use of my logo:
Using a website I found, I converted this logo PNG into an audio file that appears as the logo when played through a spectrogram. This is how the logo "sounds":
Within "Sonic Visualiser" it took some time to get the settings right to display the logo correctly, but once it did this element gave the piece a unique flair.
The final piece sounds mechanical, dystopian and ominous. It has an unnerving feel, likely due to the complete lack of structure and disjointed qualities between the sounds. The contrast in depth of the sounds and a lack of development between them gives this unpredictable nature to the work and therefore creates an uncomfortable feeling. For example- here's two of the sounds that I think display great contrast between them:
This sample sounds wide and atmospheric. It has a slight tonal quality to it though it dominantly reminds me of air rushing over the airframe of an aeroplane.
In contrast- this is the audio file of my logo I included. It feels like the complete opposite to the previous sound- it's much thinner and doesn't create a soundscape; it contains only one sonic element and is simpler in this regard.
Hearing this piece for me evokes a similar feeling to watching a surrealist film; specifically David Lynch's "Eraserhead". The unnerving, unfamiliar industrial soundscape matches the aesthetic of this movie and I love it for this reason.