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Haunted Weather: Music, Silence, and Memory (Five Star Paperback) [Paperback]

David Toop
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

13 Oct 2005 Five Star Paperback
Digital technology has changed the ways in which music is perceived, stored, distributed, mediated and created. The world of music is now a vast and complex jungle, teeming with CDs, MP3s, concerts, clubs, festivals, conferences, exhibitions, installations, websites, software programmes, scenes, ideas and competing theories. In the eye of the storm stands David Toop, shedding light on the most interesting music now being made ? on laptops, in downtown bars in Tokyo, wherever he finds it. Haunted Weather is part personal memoir and part travel journal, as well as an intensive survey of recent developments in digital technology, sonic theory and musical practice. Along the way Toop probes into the meaning of sound (and silence), offering fascinating insights into how computers can be used for improvisation. His wealth of musical knowledge provides inspiration for anyone interested in music.

Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Serpent's Tail; New Ed edition (13 Oct 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852427892
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852427894
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.9 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 425,587 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


?Haunted Weather is not just a deeply thoughtful and richly populated survey of modern experimental music, it?s a meditation on hearing itself? Guardian ?[Toop] has somehow managed to make the world of experimental music not just understandable but alluring for even the most virginal listener? this book is almost perfect? Independent on Sunday ?One of Britain?s most celebrated writers on music? New Statesman ?A joy to read, whatever your musical taste? Buzz ?With Toop?s enthusiasm and accessible style, the world of the avant-garde needn?t seem like a closed club: Haunted Weather offers the perfect port of entry for the uninitiated? Record Collector

About the Author

David Toop is a highly regarded author, music critic and musician. Since 1995 he has released three solo albums, curated five compilation albums (including the soundtrack to Ocean of Sound), and the sound and music exhibition at the Hayward Gallery - 'Sonic Boom'. His music journalism appears in The Wire, Book Forum, The Times and The Face.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Not strictly awake, though far enough from dreamless sleep, I am lying on this bed up here in the clouds. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Book!! 30 Jun 2010
By cpsitar
I can't remember what made me get this book, but I'm very glad I did. Anyone who has an interest in music from the 'avante garde', or any of these multiplicity of categories to describe new or progressive type music should enjoy this book. He talks about an incredible range of styles and artists and individual recordings. It is also very readable, he achieves this in a number of ways - personal reminiscences of concerts or even just sounds, quoting other authors and artists so as to reflect a multiplicity of voices, but mainly just by being a fantastic writer - there are times when it reads like a book by JG Ballard - the phrase 'chant of my own nostalgia' has definitely entered my consciousness!

This book has made me want to listen to an amazing breadth of artists, most I have never heard of or only their names, and even those I am familiar with, reading this has made me want to listen again in a new light. I've just ordered 'Ocean of Sound', reading this has almost made me look forward to long train journeys!
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3 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was a present for my husband. It arrived in very good condition and very promptly. As he hasn't had a chance to read it yet, I cannot comment on the actual book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fresh, thoughtful and stimulating 31 Mar 2005
By D. Borrie - Published on
Rather than argue a thesis, Toop's style is the chase down a thread of meaning via the points at which various thoughts and anecdotes cross over. This perfectly suits the nature of his subject matter- the vast, largely uncharted terrain of non-genre-based music, for which a dominant narrative and vocabulary do not yet exist as with, say, rock 'n roll or classical.

The book meditates on, among other things, the boundary between performer and audience, environmental sound and music, improviser and composer, and the role of digital technology in mediating or enhancing these distinctions.

As a journeyman music writer, critic and musician, Toop has spent a lot of his time travelling. This seems to inform his writing style as he is constantly in motion, moving quickly between personal recollections, excerpts from correspondence with diverse musicians, and lengthy quotes from various topically obscure yet philosophically related texts.

These (non-)random stop-overs make the book a slow read, as the reader is left to do a lot of the piecing together. Yet this is part of the pleasure to be found in Toop's writing- like a brilliant but challenging piece of music, the book offers an experience in which the mind of the reader is engaged as more than just a passive receptor of received ideas and emotion.
9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars big ideas spoken in a quiet voice 30 Sep 2004
By Mr. G. I. Keene - Published on
Beautiful, challenging and nourishing.

I read this upon its UK release in July and still find myself dwelling upon some of the ideas raised. Reading it challenged me to use my ears afresh, and to think about what music can be.
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