Haunted Weather: Music, Silence, and Memory: Resonant Spaces, Silence and Memory Paperback – 15 Apr 2004
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?Haunted Weather is not just a deeply thoughtful and richly populated survey of modern experimental music, it?s a meditation on hearing itself? Guardian ?One of Britain?s most celebrated writers on music? New Statesman ?Toop is up there with Eno as a theorist of ambient music? Wired ?The most interesting new music these days is being created on laptop computers and in downtown bars in Tokyo? Haunted Weather will look at the way people experience sound in the 21st century? Irish Times ?[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 ?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 ?A joy to read, whatever your musical taste? Buzz ?Toop is still light years ahead of a lot of the competition when it comes to documenting the often turbulent, but always fascinating world of contemporary sound exploration? Leeds Guide ?An unmissable, delightfully personal meander through the current sonic climate by esteemed writer/free musician Toop? Insight ?Toop rhapsodizes and roams widely, connecting his segments with quotes from novels, scientific treatises, personal anecdotes, and reflections on the famous tales of 20th century music? Signal to Noise
Digital technology has changed the ways in which music is perceived, stored, distributed, mediated and created. Contemporary sound work addresses memories, sensations and reactions directly, sometimes offering solutions or insights and sometimes making it all worse. Meanwhile, a torrent of CDs and MP3s floods over systems of marketing and distribution already on the point of collapse. Many of these changes seem too new, or too subtle, to understand fully, let alone explain. This title addresses these changes and asks questions about the ways in which technology is altering how music is performed, created and heard in the era of digital sound. This is not a book about using the Internet as a publicity or distribution tool, but a far more wide-ranging investigation into why we value sound, how we listen and how sound affects us at various levels of memory, physiology and environmental awareness.See all Product description
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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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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.
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.