A Message From Tomorrow's Master
With Russia asserting itself internationally such as its influence on Western Democratic systems, China's economy steaming forward under the renewed dictatorship of Xi Jinping, and the deepening isolationist policies of Donald Trump, the zeitgeist is of a transference of power on the global stage.
Using various synthesis techniques A Message From Tomorrow's Master offers an insight into the sound of our future's leader.
I took a Victory Day speech from Vladimir Putin and a CPC National Party Congress speech from Xi Jinping, both nationalistic and rhetorical in tone, and filtered them using a source-filtering convolution synthesis patch from MaxMSP. The desired effect was that a hybrid Russian-Chinese language would result.
I then sent this recording into the Audio-In of an analog synth (Dave Smith's Mopho) and improvised with the VCA level, oscillator's and filters, to generate unpredictable pitch and timbre. I recorded the result back into my DAW.
I wanted to emphasis the degraded audio quality that resulted from the convolution technique, so I used a tape emulating patch that I created using Ableton to modulate lfo->pitch, lfo->pan, and lfo->filter. There is also a large amount of Distortion. This was applied to several Samplers that house the audio.
The analog synth material was then played at a very high pitch on loop and reverse, whilst another did the same but very low. This is a kind of Eno-esque technique for making ambient music, but the result here is that is sound like dialing in radio frequencies.
Finally I created further texture using several instances of Izotope Iris, a filtered white noise patch using Operator and some Gain automation for movement and interest.
The composition to me feels like a radio transmission that has a kind of fallout-style aesthetic. It draws upon our historical perspective of the sound of wartime speech due to its lo-fi aesthetic, but its modern synthesis techniques point it toward the future.