the music on “permafrost” was recorded in february 2010 after i had moved to new premises in december 2009. it was inspired by the unusually long and cold winter which lasted for nearly three months and confronted us with up to three feet of snow and biting frost (some nights were at 20 degrees below zero and colder still). after nearly two months of permanent cold the temperature had briefly climbed above +10°c for a couple of days, and all of a sudden, frost and snow returned with a vengeance.
“permafrost” was recorded during a couple of studio sessions onto a digital multitrack recorder, using a variety of analogue and digital synthesisers, sampling systems, processors, and of course loop devices. the most interesting instrument i played, however, was ice. for instance, i close-miked a solidly frozen lake and used it for processing and creating sounds. i ran a variety of drones and sounds through the ice and picked them up using contact microphones (the results can be heard on part one and five of the album). i also recorded the sound of ice floes grinding against each other on a frozen canal. the slow rhythm on part four was created when i tossed tree trunks, logs, and smaller rocks onto the surface of the lake, having microphones pick up the sound through holes drilled into the ice. the best bit was when i recorded the ambient sound on the lake late at night, with some concerned neighbours calling the police as they feared i might want to do something really stupid. it took quite some effort to explain my work to the policemen who waggled a finger at me and told me not to do that again.
“permafrost” will be available in two different versions:
those who want to listen to the full score can buy a three-hour download album from extended moment over at http://www.musiczeit.com/album.php?album=1416&title=permafrost+-+music+for+hibernation+Stephen+Parsick
inspired by a nine-hour sleep concert in new orleans i contributed music to last year, this album was produced with the idea of allowing you to create your own “sleep concert” at home. just line up the tracks on your computer or ipod for continuous playback, and of course you don´t have to slavishly obey to the order the titles suggest.
those who would rather have something physical in their hands can buy a cd-r from me directly which will come in the usual all-black livery. the cd-r will contain the same music as the download version, yet in slightly abridged form to make it all fit onto one cd-r. this time it will not be a production run limited to 25 copies only but the first in a series of “cd-r on demand” albums. please notice that i will not make a set of five separate cd-rs as this would be too much hassle, and how much am i supposed to charge you for that?
i know there is an album of the same title by thomas köner but all the albums have in common is the topic dealt with and the fact that i know thomas´ work, and he knows mine. we both seem to have a soft spot for cold areas.
apologies for some unavoidable hiss.