Basement Takes Analysis

I don't think the drawing is self-explanatory, but this kind of irreverent topical analysis doesn't really create concrete results that can be explained, rather pretty looking subjective interpretations that suggest things. So this means that you can probably find more in the analysis than I even put in there.

I don't know if this is helpful or not, but it was really fun. Below are a few observations about your piece that I think my analysis has shown me.

(1) Chair and Fork seem to be the primary "characters;" Walk or Roll sounds are the next two strongest. I noticed that both Chair and Fork are introduced and focused on in the first two sections I found. The longest section I found is when the Chair and Fork play at the same time.

(2) At 11'30" there is an effect of greater density than in any other section. This occurs to the Walk sounds and is at approx. the "Perfect Ratio" division point just before 3/4 of the total duration. It is interesting that the Walk sound has a unique effect on it, considering your earlier skepticism of the sound. Was that a decision about trying to find those sounds their own space within the piece?

(3) The Dog bark (13'10") became an amusing point of reference as I listened again and again. I came to find the Dog in places that it was not actually, as at 5'27" where it is actually a tuning fork, and at 10'45" and 10'53" where it is actually a radio or tape player. This acted like a counterpoint to the other "arches" in the structure that I could find.

(4) I noticed that those two Dog sounds at 10'45" and 10'53" were actually exactly the same, and I found that interesting. There seems to be a lot of play with pairing and grouping in the piece. For example, the opposition of Chair and Fork, or of Chair/Fork and Walk/Roll; or for example the Roll and "bump" sounds near the end of the piece (with increasing brevity at 17'39", 17'52", 17'58", and 18'03") which seem related (as a group) to another direct presentation (as a solo) of the Roll at 10'34", or to the "roll/drop" kind of sound that is accomplished (through a different soloist) with tuning forks and tin can right before the first fake dog sound at 5'27".

(5) The upward or downward direction of the rectangle shapes in my drawing indicates the presence of the low hum noise that you have on some of the tracks. I found it actually created a binary pairing in the structure of the piece as it appears suddenly and leaves suddenly and is either on or off. The structural divisions created by this difference are articulated on the uppermost timeline and brackets. They suggest a classical form, with a development as the second section, a third different section which brings back elements of the first (no hum noise), and the most brief section as the conclusion.

I really like the idea of handling materials as if they are characters. That is my own interpretation, but I felt that the focus and time spent on tone or "noise" highlighted the differences between the individual characteristics that could be found within each performer/object. In this respect the piece has a nice reference to group improv or jazz music, as individual exploration is used to create a cohesive singular object. The alternating or binary structures that I think I found could arguably support a classical music reference, and there are elements of themes and of exploration and development of those themes, not to mention the golden mean at 11'30" which by my reckoning is 1/2-way through the structure-idea of the piece and 3/4("Gold")-way through the literal timeline of it. That's a bit Sonata or a bit Symphony a la Beethoven, I think, but someone might argue that with me.

I find a jazz or group improv reference stronger in the end, I guess, because of the idiosyncrasies that come through. I can't imagine a version of this piece for sinetones, for example, and I think a lot of classical music ideas can be presented pretty clearly with sinetones. haha. That's probably not always true, but maybe it also tells me something about the rawness of your piece and it's real connection to the time and space that it was made in, as opposed to an over-arching plan or strategy for it's unfolding. It is funny in this way that I feel I can find so much structure and seeming strategy in the unfolding of your piece while still believing that it is fundamentally not cemented to those exact forms.