Justin Saragoza | Abacus 32396 for Microprocessors

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Electronic: Ambient Avant Garde: Process-Generated Moods: Type: Experimental
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Abacus 32396 for Microprocessors

by Justin Saragoza

Music composed using a Japanese wood soroban (abacus).
Genre: Electronic: Ambient
Release Date: 

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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The Japanese soroban (or abacus) consists of groups of beads divided by a "reckoning bar". In the older soroban, the lower group of five beads are known as "earth beads" and a single upper bead is called the "heavenly bead". Whenever at least one earth bead and the heavenly bead contacts the reckoning bar, a greater fruition of elements becomes possible. In many situations "earth" and "heaven" beads are not united. This interplay creates the formal boundaries of Abacus 32396 for Microprocessors.

In this piece from 1996, the patterns of sound and silence are controlled by processes derived from the bead relationships. For pitch material, a wooden Japanese soroban supplied the numbers which translate to a series which one reads from bottom to top in a way that is natural, much like the growth of a plant. A brass Chinese abacus was utilized to determine the rate of growth. These numbers were then input into the microprocessors 18 cells. The cells were then processed through a flow chart named "48 number 1". The resulting sounds were recorded directly from the digital sound source onto tape, then transferred from the tape, back to a digital recording medium, and presented here.


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