Birefringence

by Jute Gyte

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about

Several tracks on this album draw from the aleatorically generated 24-note series 0, 22, 14, 21, 2, 16, 8, 3, 18, 9, 4, 7, 19, 20, 5, 12, 1, 11, 13, 15, 10, 17, 23, 6. In "Angelus Novus", all pitches and some rhythms are serialized; in "Prosopons" and "The Unformed Volcanic Earth", some pitches are serialized. "New Plastic" is a piece for four guitars in which all pitches, rhythms, and ~372 effect parameters are serialized. Otherwise, this album was written more freely than the last few.

The central portion of "Dissected Grace" is drawn from William Blake's Europe: A Prophecy. This album is additionally indebted to Morag Josephine Grant's Serial Music, Serial Aesthetics; Thomas Pynchon's Against the Day; Carlo Michelstaedter's Persuasion & Rhetoric; Keiji Nishitani's The Self-Overcoming of Nihilism; Walter Benjamin; György Lukács; James Tenney; Robinson Jeffers.

credits

released July 1, 2019

Created by Adam Kalmbach
June 2017 - February 2019

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Track Name: Angelus Novus
Midwives of horror, look to the sky at dawn
The external vortex encircling us
Hot whirling atoms split apart
Smoking dust, chaos, darkness
The process of transfiguring things into flames
The rocky law of condemnation
and double generation and death
Like a river afraid to reflect, longing to reach its end
Like men on a ship who walk in a direction
opposite the one in which the ship is going
The spill of accursed meridians, passing daily,
one upon the next
A single catastrophe piling wreckage upon wreckage
A pile of debris growing skyward
History delivered from the cloaca of time
Angelus Novus
Track Name: Dissected Grace
There is a light that shines in darkness
The darkness does not comprehend
A wound was made within the brain
And has never healed

Wisdom is the blade that cuts the wise
Reason is a hidden will to death
Death comes with knowledge’s release
Deus Arimanius

Thought changed the infinite to a serpent,
That which pitieth to a devouring flame,
And man fled from its face
and hid within forests of night

Then the eternal forests were divided
Into earths rolling in circles of space,
That like an ocean rushed and overwhelmed all
Except this finite wall of flesh

Why is light given?
Track Name: Prosopons
The system of names covers the room
of individual misery with mirrors
When one turns to look at one’s profile in the shadow,
one destroys it
The gaze inward yields nothing but the process of gazing
This horrible feeling of a blind, cut-off space
behind the fullness of everything
This half that is always missing
even when everything is a whole
Track Name: The Unformed Volcanic Earth
Sacrifice everything comforting, holy, healing, all hope,
All faith in a concealed harmony, future bliss and justice
Worship stone, stupidity, gravity, fate, nothingness
The harshest of daylight, rational at any cost,
Without instinct, in opposition to the instincts
Reject every consolation and deception
Bear the privation of every hope
Gaze on the desert of life
Break the revering heart
Return to zero
Begin again
For us, there remains only nothingness
Track Name: The Foam That Flows from the Mouths of Wild Boars
Not the same shape in changing light
But different shapes in the same light
That penetrates everything

There is no being behind doing
Only fiction added to the deed
The cold ashes of a dead fire

The locked prison of the moment
A great door through which there is no passage
All roads disgorge to black decay

In the highest circle
mystery reigns over ambiguity
and the frail light of the intellect goes out pitifully

The agony and despair of spreading bones
The foam that flows from the mouths of wild boars
The wheel that hurtles down toward emptiness
The naked flayed head without a face

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