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3 CD Box Set: L'Oeuvre Musicale The complete works of Pierre Schaeffer, re-digitised and re-issued with newly discovered tracks.
Book and 3 x CDs: Solfege de l'Objet Sonore This book, accompanied by 285 tracks on 3 CDs of examples is a unique and indispensable resource work for all those interested in electroacoustic music. Examples by Parmegiani, Henry, Bayle, Xenakis, Luc Ferrari etc. illustrate Pierre Schaeffer's text.
Book: Audible Design by Trevor Wishart
5 CD Box Set: GRM Archive 5 CD Boxed Set containing music spanning half a century of GRM inspired compositions
12 CD Box Set: Parmegiani: l'Oeuvre Musicale The complete works of Bernard Parmegiani on 12 CDs

Trevor Wishart - Globalalia/Imago

Trevor wishart - Globalalia/ImagoA re-issue of Globalalia which explores human speech and the syllables common to all, and Imago, which is constructed entirely out of the sound of 2 whiskey glasses being clinked together. Classic Wishart at his best!

Wishart writes: "In Globalalia, I wanted to use human speech, but focus on what we hold in common as human beings. Although the world’s languages contain many millions of words, these are constructed from a much smaller set of sounds, the syllables. I wrote to several friends asking them to collect voices from their local radio stations, and also recorded voices from TV stations via satellite dish, assembling sounds from 134 voices in 26 different languages. I then edited these into their syllables, ending with more than 8300 sources."

Francis Dhomont - Etudes Pour Kafka

Francis Dhomont - Etudes Pour KafkaA new release from Francis Dhomont, who in the opinion of many is the greatest living composer of electroacoustic music. This CD contains 3 studies which were the seeds from which many of his other works grew. Behind major works of the scope of … mourir un peu, Sous le regard d’un soleil noir, and Forêt profonde, in these studies Dhomont experiments with the themes, tries out sound materials, and unveils glimpses of the final work. Dhomont at his best!

Denis Smalley - Sources - Scénes

Denis Smalley - Sources - ScénesrOne of our most popular titles is back in stock. Denis Smalley is one of the UK's best known composers of electroacoustic music, and this CD is a personal favourite of ours - definitely a desert island disc. The music is simply stunningly beautiful, the production and sound quality are as good as it gets. If you don't already have this CD, don't put it off any longer.
Parmegiani: l'Oeuvre MusicaleWe are fans of Bernard Parmegiani and so we now have all of his CDs in stock, including the newly released l'Oeuvre Musicale. If you don't know his music, we recommend that you make an acqaintence with it by listening to some clips and reading the comprehensive notes which we have on the site. Click here for links to his biography and all his CDs.
Pierre Hanry: Labyrinthe We now stock a selection of the best electroacoustic CDs from the GRM Catalog, both historic and new - Electroacoustic Classics from Pierre SchaefferPierre Henry Luc Ferrari and  Jean-Claude Risset are just some of the new offerings.

One of our most popular GRM titles is Pierre Henry's Labyrinthe - Pierre Henry says of Labyrinthe - "For the first time during my journey and ventures into the world of creation, I dreamt of a breath of fresh air deriving from the electronic realm." This CD is a real retrospective of this pioneer of electronic music.
New from Digital Music Archives - Download a continually expanding catalogue of electroacoustic music tracks!

You can now download a selection of single tracks of music from our website. All the tracks are encoded as top quality MP3s at 320k. All you have to do is go to our tracks page, add the ones you want to your shopping cart, and you will be presented with a webpage with links to the tracks as soon as your credit card payment has been authorised. You will also be sent an email with the links and a seven day period to download the tracks.
Our UK Event Listings service is now online....

We now have a listings page for concerts, festivals, conferences and workshops of electroacoustic music in the UK. We hope it will soon be the place to check up on whats happening and where. Its already up and running - click here! to check it out.
Looking for a course in electroacoustic composition? - Try our links page for some of the best places in the UK. You'll also find links to organisations and institutes all over the world.

Think we've missed out on something? Email us at and let us know.

CD Details for Bernard Parmegiani: Violostries

Violostries Bernard Parmegiani
Parmegiani says of the works on the first of this double CD set: "They are from the sewing age - a period during which scissors helped us to calibrate sounds and silences" The second CD is representative of a new era where the mouse replaced the scissors.
62:55 - 64
In Stock
 Customer Reviews 
 Other Titles by Bernard Parmegiani 
 Audio Clips 
Track 1
Violostries - Pulsion Miroir
Track 2
Violostries - Jeu de cellules
Track 3
Violostries - Végétal
Track 4
Pour en finir - Faire
Track 5
Pour en finir - défaire
Track 6
Pour en finir - Kaleidoscope I
Track 7
Pour en finir - Kaleidoscope II
Track 8
Pour en finir - L'Oscillée
Track 9
Pour en finir - Unisson des Voix
Track 10
Dedans-Dehors - En Phase/Hors Phase
Track 11
Dedans-Dehors - Jeux
Track 12
Dedans-Dehors - Retour de las Forét
Track 13
Dedans-Dehors - Métamorphoses
Track 14
Dedans-Dehors - Lointain-proche
 Sleeve Notes 

About the Artist


Born Paris 1927

Amongst the catalogue of works by Bernard Parmegiani (60 opus), some of the titles testify more particularly to his musical path: Violostries (1965), Capture éphémêre (Fleeting Capture) (1968), L’CEiI écoute (The Eye Listens) (1970), L’Enfer, d’après La Divine Comedic (Hell, after the Divine Comedy) (1972), Pour en finir avec le pouvoir d’Orphee (To be Finally Done with the Power of Orpheus) (1971-1972), De natura sonorum (1974-1975), La Création du monde (Creation of the World (1982-1984), (CD Sèmes Victoires de la musique) (Triumphs of Music) (1990), cycle Plain temps (1991-1992-1993), Sonare, (1996), La Mémoire des sons (Memory of Sounds) (2000-2001).

Excepting some rare mixed pieces, the works as a whole take the farm of music for “fixed sounds”, coming within the scope of the immense repertoire of electro-acoustic music. From his training in the art of mime and his experience as a sound engineer, Parmegiani has retained a taste for a hand-to-hand approach (sound/embodiment, as we could be tempted to say) with various sound materials which he has developed throughout markedly diverse works. In 1959 he began by creating the music for a film by Max de Hoas: Jours de ma vie (Days of my Life) which was awarded a prize at the Festival for Short Films in Tours. This experience was to be further enhanced over some 35 years, taking into account that the music for television, radio, advertising and the stage provided the composer with the opportunity to display musical accomplishment by experimenting with new musical forms and new instrumental techniques. In this respect, his most well-known work is undoubtedly the signature sound signal at Roissy-Charles-de Gaulle Airport. He likewise went on to work with choreographs (Michel Descombey, Vittorio Biagi at the Théâtre du Silence, Christine Bastin, amongst others who, interested in some of Parmegiani’s works, later commissioned him to compose music for ballet.
Being interested in yet other forms of musical expression, Parmegiani made a foray into the world of pop music and jazz; in the company of instrumentalists such as the saxophonist Jean-Louis Chautemps with whom he created Jazzex in 1966, an encounter which he again renewed in 1971 with Le Diable a quatre, (Devil of four for the Michel Portal jazz group, then, Et après (And after), with Michel Portal playing the large accordion. Anxious to further his exploration of the relationships between sound and the visual image, he tried out new forms in his “actions musicales” (musical ventures) wherein his wish to consider sounds as living beings prompted him to situate them in an anthropomorphic context. In Trio (1973), Des Mots et des sons (Words and Sounds) (1978), Mess media sans (homo parleurs) (Mess Media Sounds - Homo Talkers (1979), Demons et des mats (Demons and Wards) (1988), he has created situations where sounds in the guise of sonorous actors are confronted by a human actor in encounters which are alternately humorous and dramatic. Also having an interest in video art, as discovered in the United States in 1971, he made a video film based on the music in “L’il écoute” (The Eye Listens), featuring visual imagery processed through a synthesiser. Two experimental works were to follow: L’Ecran transparent (The Transparent Screen) (1973) and Jeux d’artifice (Artful Games) (1978), the first work having been produced by the WDR in Cologne and the second by INA.
From sewing age...

About the Music

The three pieces composed between 1963 and 1976, which appear on the first record, belong to what I shall call “the sewing age”: a period during which scissors helped us to calibrate sounds and silences, while we turned the buttons to get rid of undesirable frequencies or, on the contrary, added frequencies, supposedly to provide supplementary sounds when they seemed dull to us in their natural state.

Volostries is this first work as a couturier’s apprentice, which led me to lacemaking. Devy Erlih, the instigator and author of the violin part, provided me with the material for the work, the thread, we might say, the knots and the embellishments: cells of sound, woven, stitched, linked, taut, sustained sounds.

After a chaotic, massive (macro-temporal) introduction followed by pulsions and (micro) sound clusters brought into play by the violin “soloist”, the work opens out into a continually progressing fluid mass (Végétal).

The latter announces Capture éphémère (1967), which had to be exorcised soon afterwards (1971), with
Pour en finir avec le pouvair d’Orphée. “En finir” was in fact simply a settling of scores with certain stylistic choices, certain over-familiar forms. Here the kinetics of the sounds was no longer shown through masses or agglomerates but through sound units, each doted with an internal movement: superposition of trajectories, cycles with shifting timbres.

(1977) broadens the field of metamarphoses previously put to the test in the movement of De Natura Sonorum entitled Matières induites where natural sounds (sounds from nature) were confronted with artificial sounds (synthetic sounds).

These metamorphoses reflect : changes: passages from fluid to solid, and carry along with them the notion of “inside-outside” (dialectic à la Bachelard), the expression of which is manifested through a few sounds -symbols: in phase/out of phase breathing—the door: place of transition the wave: internal-external energy sound crescendo: distant, close, the approach
to mouse age
The second record is representative, as far as I am concerned, of a new era in acousmatic music, where the scissors are partly replaced by the mouse running over the windows of the computer. Since 1985, musical computer technology has become the complementary tool, which I used moderately, whilst not forgetting to dip the point of those scissors into the ink of sound.

Exerpt from Rouge-Mart (1987) after Carmen by Prosper Mérimée.

Choreography by Vittorio Biagi, Nice Opera House.
Mérimée’s simple style reveals a set of themes that are close to Greek tragedy.
Each character is inexorably pushed towards his ruin. Thanatos, here, after Eros, represents the duality of an inevitable fate. The use of a magic ritual, justified by the gipsy origin of’ Carmen, enables us to punctuate the accomplishment of the tragedy with a series of iterative premonitor signs. To be certain of these signs, I have given sound equivalents, with either timbres or melodic motifs. As Carmen is a very well-known work, it was less important to respect the details of the story than to reconsider the myth in the light of different means, such as those of electroacoustic music.

Exercisme 3 (1986)

In this neologism we can make out the words “exercise” and “exorcism”. The development of a musical idea could, at first, be sketched out through an exercise to support the arguments of the idea itself. We practise on order “to see” or, rather, to hear.
Between “exercise” and “exorcism” there is indeed only a slight phonetic difference. But the intention of this piece was not to exploit this difference, if there is exorcism, it could be that of the sounds, and, more so, that of synthetic sounds produced directly by the synthesizers. Considered individually, the latter are usually short-lived, limited in their internal development. The exercise thus consists in bringing them out of their fabricated form, coaxing them and making them develop in time by extending and varying the sound fabric of which they are composed. The starting-point for these sounds is that provided by the “presets” of the synthesizers – ie: the sounds preset at the “factory” providing a banal imitation of classical string instruments.
The means used to accomplish this “exorcism” were principally: the Pitch Rider, the Syter system in association with Publison DHM. I do not intend to go into the technical details of these systems; I shall simply describe the effects used for the purposes of this “exorcism”.
The Pitch Rider is a sort of interface enabling natural sounds or analogical synthetic sounds to release digitally synthesized sounds. Such and such a series of impulsions releases virtually aleatoric, and sometimes very varied, repetitions of digital sounds. These repetitions are often very “dense” and take us to the limits of continual sound phenomena, thus making these “factory sounds” lose their instrumental “soul”.
Thus, we suddenly swing from one domain to another, from the instrumental to the electroacoustic, from a language we understand to an “unknown language”. It is here that, with Syter, I worked on the “inside” of these new elements, treating them in real time. The result is a sort of modelling of the sound fabric, which is very evolutive and is controlled by pre-established programming. As for Publison, it provides a wide variety of possibilities far exploring, at different speeds, the structures of a sound that has been memorized.

One last word about the starting-point of this piece. It begins with a very realistic sound, which is very close to silence: a desert plain in Southern Morocco... a bird, in the distance, repeats its cry. Let us leave the bird to its desert; we shall capture only its cry.

Prix Magisterium at the International Competition in Bourges, 1991

Le Présent composé... (1991)

A title that could be applied to a good many works. It would simple to come to an agreement on the meaning of the word “present.” Here I shall be more radical: the :present mentioned in the title is, in fact, the instant. That instant which Bachelard describes as being the only reality of time, and which, in large numbers, farms the duration, a duration that we make intimately our own by the way we experience it, compose it. “I” compose the instant, the instant composes me. Things we do automatically or deliberately, the aim of which is to inflect the instant towards a composed continuity. From the latter arises another which in turn... Death and resurrection of the instant! Intertwining of actions and reactions. Another aspect of this instant/present: that of the daily reality of sound.

“Give us our sounds”.., so that our intimacy may be recomposed in the harmony and antagonism of what we hear. From familiar sounds to the most anonymous, those we make or are subjected to, we are a place of resonance for both sorts. We should like this resonance to continue indefinitely. Simply the beginning of an “indefinitely”. We would ask time to stop its advance, to immobilise the future, as Vladimir Jankélévitch would say, to bathe in this illusory situation in which time is “frozen”. Everything is going wrong! Frozen time consumes time. We must go on. On the other hand, the ephemeral, the flesh of the present, the kernel of the instant. Its strength lies in its brevity. Like a spike, it unconsciously makes its way inside us, sometimes mare deeply, reaching, and at the same time revealing to us, large underground expanses, from which the past bursts forth, a paradoxical echo of the present.
This piece is the first in a suite entitled Plain-Temps.
B. P.

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