Video, Sound, and Print Art & Beyond

Video Music Video 2020


Music by Max Cooper.

Max Cooper: I had a lot of fun with polyrhythms and cheeky synth noises with this one after a first play with the new Summit synth from Novation. I tried to carry that playful vibe through the track and keep it stripped back to let all the little jams and spatialised wurbles have their own place in the mix, only finally descending fully into the pads and chords late on. It was nice to have a more stripped mix than usual to let the little granular modulations and glitches each have their own space and clean reverb tails. There isn't any conceptual link between the music itself and the Earth theme of the EP for this track, all I did was chat to the visual artist Yoshi Sodeoka about the themes of earth-bound growth processes which had gone into the EP as a whole, and he tied many sounds of the music to animated expansion processes and abstracted microbiological form in order to tie everything together. Sometimes it's nice to rely on the visual artist to build the conceptual link when I just want to experiment with weird noises with a new synth.

Yoshi Sodeoka: Max invited me into this project during COVID lockdown in NYC, when illustrations of viral forms were unavoidable - they terrified me then, and they terrify me now. I wondered how I might transform my shaky feelings into something positive and hopeful. Lately I've been making a lot of audio-reactive generative works using a technique based on reaction diffusion. I realized that the pulsing rhythmic structure of "Spike" makes it a perfect audio track to synchronize with a visual improvisation on the impulse and evolution of imaginary microorganisms. The visuals grew from a few seeds of graphic and audio information that was animated, then mutated by automatic video feedback. Feedback generates more feedback, it becomes self-organizing, and it continues to generate forever unless it is instructed to stop. Like evolutionary processes in nature, making the visuals this way is often unpredictable and beyond control.This work is not a metaphor for Earth's processes, nor is it meant as an illustration of Max's music. I'd like to think of it as a way to confront the contagion and get free of lockdown, a lively voyage into a colorful inner terrain of image and sound.