The Music

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  1. O Muse! 09: Winter Solstice 2022
  2. Silver Godesses
  3. Pastel Essentia
  4. The Music
  5. Sonnet
  6. Change on Change
  7. Mercury Snake

A novel through sound


Prelude

It’s
three-thirty in the morning and
we’re far underground in one
of the deepest
trenches
of
the
Pacific
Ocean.
A
hole
has
been
drilled
down
through
the
ocean
floor
and
a
small
microphone
has
been
fed
through
the
hole
some
considerable
distance


In the last hundred years – between the invention of the microphone and the computer – music has undergone a profound revolution. No longer confined to specifically designed instruments, we can now make music out of anything.

The Music is novel through sound, an album in words. A description of an album that Matthew will never make, it leads us through a shifting sonic landscape in precise detail – Chinese concrete slowly hardening, overlaid by a splintering cassette tape in the stereo of a car mid-crash. The noise of 73,984 insects hitting number plates followed by that of a drill striking oil deep beneath the earth’s surface. Or just the silence of two unfamiliar people as they look up at the night sky.

This experimental novel is also a manifesto for sound: in the last hundred years – between the invention of the microphone and the computer – music has undergone a profound revolution.

No longer confined to specifically designed instruments, we can now make music out of anything. Why use a guitar when you can use a lawnmower? Why use a lawnmower when you can use an explosion in Libya?


Matthew Herbert is a prolific and award-winning musician, artist, producer and writer whose range of innovative work extends from numerous albums to film scores and installations, as well as music for the theatre, TV, games and radio. He has performed all around the world from the Sydney Opera House to the Hollywood Bowl. He is director of the new BBC Radiophonic Workshop and an artistic researcher in the School of Music and Performing Arts, Canterbury Christ Church University. Matthew Herbert lives in Kent.

unbound.com/books/matthewherbert/

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