Canadian Electroacoustic Community CEC

Founded in 1986, the Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC) is Canada’s official national association for electroacoustics and as such is dedicated to promoting this progressive art form in its broadest definition: from “pure” acousmatic and computer music to soundscape and sonic art to hardware hacking and beyond.

The CEC endeavours to foster a broad, diverse and inclusive community of electroacoustic practitioners, raise the profile of electroacoustics in the Canadian arts milieu, and to promote Canadian electroacoustic composers and activities across Canada and internationally. The various ongoing and singular CEC activities aim to maintain and strengthen communications and information flow concerning electroacoustics.

With projects such as the electronic journal eContact!, the online jukebox SONUS, the annual Jeu de Temps / Times Play (JTTP) project for Canadian-based young and emerging sound artists, and the Cache, PRESENCE and DISContact! CD compilation series, the CEC offers Canadian electroacousticians a venue to both promote themselves and participate within the global community, thereby fostering mutual awareness and benefit in the international scene.

Jeu de Temps / Times Play (JTTP) <>

JTTP was launched in 2000. This annual project comprises a competition for Canadian-based young and emerging sound artists with more than $4300 (JTTP 2008) worth of prizes awarded to the top five placing composers (by selection of an international jury), an issue of eContact! featuring all submissions to the project, a CD compilation Cache with the top 8–11 placing works, and international radio broadcasts and concert diffusion for the winners.

Cache is distributed internationally to people and institutions active in the production and support of electroacoustics (CEC members, radio programmes and stations, concert promoters and various important cultural organizations). Several of the top-placing participants in past editions have gone on to win prizes in other renowned international electroacoustic competitions, such as Bourges, Métamorphoses and the SOCAN Foundation Awards, further confirming the healthy state of the electroacoustic community in Canada and the reputation it has developed over the years in the international scene.

2008 was a very good year for JTTP. With a number of new Project Partners joining the project this year, the size of the awards package (recordings, books and journals) given to the top five winners was substantially increased. Several members of the international jury also commented positively on the strength of this year’s submissions.

The top five (prize-winning) works, as selected by the international jury, for the 2008 edition of the project are (NB tie for second place):

1 Nick Storring Artifacts (I) 8:00 2007
2 Jean-François Blouin Catacombes 10:01 2007
3 Félix-Antoine Morin Feed Metal Dirt 7:00 2007
4 Thierry Gauthier [pjanistik] 4:56 2006
5 Mathieu Arsenault Edges 5:35 2008

JTTP 2008 | Programme Notes and Bios

1. Nick Storring — Artifacts (I) (2007 / 8:00)

Artifacts (I) is drawn from a (projected) series of works based entirely on sounds from a near-broken violin. The violin, despite being full-size was given to me by my grandmother when I was too young to remember, a hint to my parents that I should get violin lessons. I ended up getting cello lessons instead and the violin collected dust, and endured several seasons of humidity and lack thereof, leading to the collapsed of its soundpost.

This piece explores memory and the (mis)representation of events in time through documentation and recording.

This violin seemed like an apt sound-source for such a piece. I used the strings — bowed, plucked, struck, scraped, bent from the other side of the bridge, but also the body of the instrument — the sound of the paint and varnish being scraped off by the microphone, the body being struck, the soundpost being shaken around inside of it.

The processing of the materials was inspired by various recording media — everything from sound of old 78 RPM to corrupt MP3 files. Compositionally I also was interested by suggesting certain stylistic markers. There was also an awareness on my part of evocations and manipulations of time on the level of a recording in and of itself, the perception of historical time, and time in the personal/ nostalgic domain, and how these temporal lines intersect.

Nick Storring is a composer, and cellist based in Toronto, Ontario. He holds a BMus in music composition from Wilfrid Laurier University where he worked with Peter Hatch and Glenn Buhr. Currently he is finishing a Masters in composition at York University with David Mott. He has been featured as a composer and performer at a variety of festivals and series nationally including Suoni Per Il Popolo, Over The Top (Toronto), VTO Festival (Toronto), Open Ears (2005, 2007 Kitchener), Wavelength’s Anniversary, and the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony’s New Orchestra Series. He has also composed for a variety of theatre and intermedia productions in the Waterloo area, including for several pieces with experimental company MT Space. He is a member of several projects including sombre ‘sleep-rock’ trio Picastro (Polyvinyl Records), eclectic and electronics-heavy improvisational trio I Have Eaten The City and The Knot, an improv-based cello duo with Tilman Lewis. (JTTP 2008, 2008) |

2. Jean-François Blouin — Catacombes (2007 / 10:01)

Acousmatic work inspired by the presence of basement environments in my existence. No matter what, I seem to be confined to live “underground” … where others hear less of the residual vibrations of my sonorous curiosities.

I developed the piece by imagining the explosion of my environment at such a scale that closed spaces suddenly become vast and luminous, only to again close upon themselves in an obstinate slamming of doors.

Jean-François Blouin is currently studying at the Conservatoire de Musique de Montréal under Yves Daoust. There he is developing computer-assisted music and composes acousmatic works. He has collaborated in the creation of mixed works by Michel Gonneville, Louis Dufort, Charles-Antoine Fréchette and Gabriel Dharmoo. He has done the sound design for theatre works (Marc Béland and Guy Sprung), dance pieces (Catherine Castonguay, Estelle Clareton and Sonia Biernath), the circus (Nicolas Cantin) and visual arts (Julie Favreau and Sylvie Chartrand). In 2005, with colleague Benoit Rolland, he founded the duo Blube, which performs live electroacoustic music. (JTTP 2008, 2008)

Pièce acousmatique inspirée de la présence des environnements sous-terrains dans mon existence. Quoiqu’il arrive on me confine à migrer au sous-sol. Là où l’on entendra moins les vibrations résiduelles de mes curiosités sonores.

J’ai élaboré cette pièce en imaginant l’éclatement de mon environnement à une échelle où des espaces fermés deviennent tout à coup vastes et lumineux, pour ensuite se refermer dans des claquements de portes obstinés.

Jean-François Blouin étudie au Conservatoire de Musique de Montréal dans la classe de Yves Daoust. Il y développe la composition assistée par ordinateur et crée des pièces acousmatiques. Il a été assistant à la création de musique mixte auprès de Michel Gonneville, Louis Dufort, Charles-Antoine Fréchette et Gabriel Dharmoo. Il a été concepteur sonore au théâtre pour Marc Béland et Guy Sprung, à la danse pour Catherine Castonguay, Estelle Clareton et Sonia Biernath, au cirque pour Nicolas Cantin et en arts visuels pour Julie Favreau et Sylvie Chartrand. Avec son collègue Benoit Rolland, il fonde en 2005 le duo Blube, axé sur la performance en musique électroacoustique en directe. (JTTP 2008, 2008) |

3. Félix-Antoine Morin — Feed Metal Dirt (2007 / 7:00)

Esthetically, I take my inspiration from the lute-making of German industrial music from the 1970s. This piece is also nourished by a spontaneous coup de cœur that I had for a particular space: the construction site of a vast concert room to be. When I accidently discovered this humongous space, the image before me struck my eyes, it represented exacly the spirit that I want to insufflate my music of. The warmth of the lighting on the concrete walls created by the industrial projectors gave the place such a particular cinematic ambiance. In this artistically rich environment, the sounds where being born out of the gravel, out of huge metal pipes of different sizes, of various construction tools and cardboard boxes, and all sorts of multiform objects laying around. This amalgamation of sounds was babbling and growing inside the belly of this enormous space with such an intimidating resonance. This place seemed to embody something sacred for me, something like a cathedral. Thankfully I had a microphone on me and was prepared. As the hunt for sounds begun, time stood still, finally I was alone, abandoned in my natural environment.

Therefore, the piece is constituted of sounds extracted directly from the original recording. Also I wanted to work with matters of natural parasitic such as “feedbacks” and noises often considered as sonorous pollution.

The structure plays on two planes: the mechanic of the parasitic sounds in their very reduced space and the repercussions of the industrial objects caught in their urban cathedral. Foremost, this piece is a ground-test of the development of an instinctive and rythmical language.

Félix-Antoine Morin is a multidisciplinary artist working among other things as a sound designer for films. As a composer, his career started in the mid-80s experimenting with a fisherprice tape recorder. While working as a Dj in the 90s he studied visual arts at the University of Québec in Montréal where he developed a instintive language that would soon be transferred into his music. In collaboration with long-time friend and musician, Patrick Dubé, Felix-Antoine put together the D-co project. The duo blend electronic, industrial percussions and interactive lo-fi. While working on the project, he also does many sound designs for long and shorts films and and signs the conception of the music for a fashion show by Denis Gagnon. Making his way in the the world of music he meets a Montréal-based electronic duo called Nuclear Ramjet which he ends up working with in studio and for live performances. The beginning of 2004 marks a significant moment in his career, where he enters the world of instrumental music and starts experimenting. In a jam space of an old factory in Montréal called l’Usine Groover, he puts together many musical projects based on improvisation and spontaneity, of which are Minuskulls, a project with small instruments and the Readyfactory. Into a creative mindset he then form three experimental projects, Feltz, Eta Bootis and the infamous noise band ttttttttttttttttttttt each of them following their own musical direction. (JTTP 2008, 2008)

Esthétiquement, je tire en partie mon inspiration de la lutherie de la musique industrielle allemande des années 70. Cette composition est aussi nourrie par un coup de cœur que j’ai eu dans l’enceinte d’un lieu particulier : une vaste salle de concert en chantier de construction. Et lorsque je suis tombé, par hasard, sur cette immense pièce, l’image que j’avais devant moi représentait exactement l’esprit que je voulais insuffler à ma musique. L’éclairage chaud des projecteurs industriels sur les murs de béton donnait à l’endroit une ambiance particulièrement cinématographique. Les sons naissaient de gros tubes métalliques de différentes grandeurs, du gravier, des objets de construction de toutes sortes et de tout un bordel de boîtes de carton et de trucs multiformes jonchant le sol. Ainsi cet amalgame sonore balbutiait dans un espace intérieur énorme à la résonance intimidante. Pour moi, cet endroit semblait incarner quelque chose de sacré, telle une cathédrale. J’étais justement muni d’un micro; la chasse aux sons a commencé et la notion du temps s’est volatilisée pendant un long moment. Enfin j’étais seul, abandonné dans mon environnement naturel!

La composition est donc constituée de sons directement extraits de cette séance d’enregistrement. J’ai aussi voulu travailler avec des matières de nature parasitaire comme des ‘‘feedbacks’’ divers ainsi que des bruits souvent considérés comme de la pollution sonore.

La structure joue sur deux plans: celui de la mécanique des sons-parasites dans leur espace très réduit et celui de la répercussion de mes objets industriels captés dans leur cathédrale urbaine. Avant tout, cette pièce se veut un essai de développement d’un langage rythmique instinctif.

En tant que compositeur, Felix-Antoine morin fait ses débuts dans la première moitié des années 80 à l’aide d’un magnétophone Fisherprice beige. (…) Dans les années 90, il travaille comme disc-jockey. Il étudie aussi les arts visuels à l’UQÀM et y développe un langage intrinsèque qu’il introduit plus tard dans sa musique. Il crée le projet D-Co avec Patrick Dubé. Le duo mélange l’électro, les percussions industrielles et le lo-fi interactif. Entre temps, il fait la conception sonore pour divers courts et moyens métrages ainsi que la musique pour le défilé de mode de Denis Gagnon. Plus tard, il rencontre le duo de musique techno Nuclear Ramjet avec lequel il collabore surtout en spectacle. (…) En 2004, il s’oriente vers la musique instrumentale. Dans un local de l’Usine Grover, il met au monde plusieurs projets musicaux basés sur l’improvisation dont les collectifs Minuskulls et la Readyfactory. Il fonde ensuite les groupes Feltz, Eta Bootis et ttttttttttttttttttttt. Avec ce dernier, il crée une cassette sur l’étiquette Evoc in evens et un disque sur Brise-cul Records. (…) Au cours de l’année 2007, il prend part au collectif Parabolik Guerilla, dans le spectacle multimédia Symbolocaust inspiré des mouvements du butoh et du chamanisme. Il étudie présentement la musique acousmatique avec les compositeurs Yves Daoust et Louis Dufort au conservatoire de musique de Montréal. Sa production est basée sur l’enregistrement de sons concrets gardés à l’état brut. (JTTP 2008, 2008) |

4. Thierry Gauthier — [pjanistik] (2006 / 4:56)

This expressionist acousmatic piece is entirely made from prepared piano and sine waves. The development is guided by the piano fragments, which were played and recorded directly on the soundboard of the instrument.

Thierry Gauthier has completed a diploma in computer assisted sound design, a (BMus) in Electro acoustic music composition at University of Montréal (2007) and he is completing an M.Mus. in electroacoustic music and video composition with Jean Piché at University of Montreal (2008). He received an honorary mention (2nd prize) at the international electroacoustic music competition Musica Nova (Czech Republic, 2006), finalist at the 5e Electro-Acoustics Miniatures International Contest (Spain, 2008) and finalist (3rd prize) at the competition JTTP (Canada, 2007). The eclectic composer distinguishes himself by his versatility and by his experimental techniques and approach to composition. He received numerous commissions for movies, art-videos, television series, documentaries, multimedia, installations and multidisciplinary performances. He has performed in more than 250 concerts across the world and his compositions can be found recorded on more than twenty albums. (JTTP 2008, 2008)

Altération pianistique, agencement et manipulation de sons provenant de la table d’harmonie d’un piano préparé.

Thierry Gauthier est détenteur d’un diplôme (AEC) en conception sonore assistée par ordinateur (Musitechnic, 1998), d’un baccalauréat en composition électroacoustique (Université de Montréal, 2007) et il complete une maîtrise en composition électroacoustique et videomusique avec Jean Piche (Université de Montréal, 2008). Le compositeur eclectique se démarque par sa grande diversité de styles et ses techniques experimentales. Il a reçu maintes commandes, il compose et produit de la musique pour films, videos, series televisées, documentaires, installations et performances multidisciplinaires. Il a performé dans plus de 250 concerts a travers le monde et ses compositions se retrouvent enregistrées sur plus d’une vingtaine d’albums. Il est récipiendaire d’une mention honorable (2e prix) au concours international de composition électroacoustique Musica Nova (Republique Tcheque, 2006), finaliste pour le 5e Concours International de Miniatures Électroacoustiques (Espagne, 2008) et finaliste (3e prix) au concours JTTP (Canada, 2007). (JTTP 2008, 2008) |

5. Mathieu Arsenault — Edges (2008 / 5:35)

Edges is an angular piece. It contains fragments of recordings of the sounds produced by the work Parcourir le Hors-Champs (2008) by the artist Gwenaël Bélanger. Thanks to the artist and to the personnel of the UQAM Gallery.

Studies in electroacoustic composition at the Cégep Saint-Laurent in Montréal from 2005 to 2007. Entered the electroacoustic composition programme at the Université de Montréal in 2007.

Edges est une pièce angulaire. Elle contient des fragments d’enregistrements de sons émis par l’œuvre Parcourir le Hors-Champs (2008) de l’artiste Gwenaël Bélanger. Merci à l’artiste et au personnel de la galerie de l’Uqam.

Études en composition électroacoustique au cégep Saint-Laurent de Montréal de 2005 à 2007. Admission à l’université de Montréal en composition électroacoustique en 2007. (JTTP 2008, 2008)