Archive

Thoughts

Have you done it yet? Do you like it? Is it amazing? I’m so late to the party – I haven’t done it, not sure I will do it either but want to throw in some thoughts about Apple’s iOS7 update and my feelings about it.

Why haven’t you done it yet?!?!!

I sort of knew it was imminent and had being thinking about it mainly because I own an iphone 4 and was wondering if all the whizzing and banging that would come from the new OS would impede it in someway and the internet pretty much says ‘Yes it does!’ All this for some new icons, animations and that bar thing at the bottom of the screen that all looked very Android-y. But that isn’t what has got me upset about it, this is what has…

Picture the scene – you have your £399 iPad at the ready, Apogee audio I/O ( say an Apogee Jam, like me, at £79 or maybe an Apogee One at £299 ( definitely not like me )), you’re flicking on your favourite music app ( sorry, I think pretty much all apps are reasonably priced – £40 for a full DAW is a good price ) you’re ready to go and…..whoah the darn thing’s not working!!!!

Loopy

NI

If that was me and this was the equipment i used to make my art I would be livid. Now, I only use a bit of it and I’m still livid. But why should I be surprised this happened with the 1st and 2nd generation ibooks and OSX where we were left with expensive kit that would only work properly once we hung around 3 years for USB audio to finally work! Yeah, that was me too!!

Honesty. Honestly.

When you buy into a computer system you are, in effect, buying into a volatile ecosystem dependent on the whims of it’s inventors and owners. Apple has done the most amazing marketing job and owners of it’s technology ( for the most part ) adore it, because, ( for the most part ), it’s very well made and works well ( until it doesn’t ). PC owners are kind of different in that they cling to the OS they know best ( XP!! ) and refuse to let go until they have to or until they can figure Linux out. But it’s not just Apple here – we need app developer honesty too. If you’re using that iPod touch solely for what a few apps give you creatively, then they should darn well inform you when the device your running is going to start to suffer through their OS driven up dates. If something works for you, you don’t care what platform it’s on or what the icons look like because you just want to create.

Hardware vs Software

And now to the crux of the issue for me and making music. A dedicated piece of hardware is exactly that – what it lacks in multi-functionality it should make up for in the fact that it does what it’s supposed to. I’m not naive enough to believe that’s all you need (though it could be) I’ve just been left feeling totally let down by the shift in OS and the ( the possible ) need for new equipment for it to work fully and not telling me about that first.

Which is a shame. My iPhone 4 is ace – I can take photos, make videos, record music etc etc – but how long for if I don’t subscribe to a vision of what my creative practice should be.

>

20130915-195411.jpg

I found out a week after he died, a brief foray onto Facebook where someone had posted about his last words to his wife. I felt sad and tried to remember as many of his words as I could. The wonder of when they fall into place with new meanings.

A Door into the Dark was the first book of his I got hold of. I was 14 and bought it with a Christmas present book token from a book shop located by the market in the centre of Leicester (it’s not there now, it closed before the 1980′s were out, I think). Back then, bookshops seemed to have more poetry in them, but back then, summers seemed longer too so you can’t be sure. This book was full of incredible imagery and discovery, for me, that I still feel when I read them now even though my circumstances are so much different than they were then. Such is the power of words and their pull on the memory.

“All I know is a door into the dark.”

Apologies for not being around much lately but I’ve been otherwise engaged.

I’ve been playing with my family. Playing the guitar to myself. Listening to things.

I went to the Cotswolds.

Soldiers against a Snowshill sky

I’ve been riding my bike.

Like flying

I went to Norfolk.

20130721-192030.jpg

What have you been doing?

It was a few weeks ago now but it’s still firm in the memory. Handmade was such a fantastic event – it was wonderful to see so many people walking around my hometown going to see the acts and arts at different venues, the real buzz of people enjoying it.

As for my bit, I’d spent a lot of time worrying about it, thinking about it, trying to do something special for it and hopefully I managed to show that. It was a magical space and I had a wonderful time.

Peter Wyeth 457
(Photo courtesy of the lovely Ian Nutt – go check him out)

Here’s a short video of me talking and playing on the day via The Grade

20130428-203715.jpg

About two weeks ago, I was on a barge travelling down part of the Northamptonshire arm of the Grand Union Canal. There was banked up snow a metre thick in places along the road side. Our first morning on water was spent breaking through the ice of a frozen canal. We travelled back through snow at times, leaping on and off the boat to open and close locks, snowflakes falling around us.

But now, after what seems like about 3 days of sunshine, spring is EVERYWHERE! Bold, bright dawn chorus. Birds singing over the hedgerows as I ride home from work. And blossom. Blossom, blossom, blossom.

20130428-204324.jpg

20130428-204310.jpg

20130428-204336.jpg

20130428-204346.jpg

Which lead me to this wonderful piece of music by
Loren Connors & David Grubbs

Well, there was a lot of effort and excitement that went into the Public Service Broadcasting gigs that went ‘PFFFT’ in a moment after the first show; my ears buggered by the massive volume of a PA trying to make the music heard over 200 odd people chatting to one another.

It hurt. It hurt a lot. I had to pull out of the other shows as I couldn’t go through with it another two nights in a row.

Ironically, I have taken solace in one of the loudest sounds I know. Church bells.

The new bells of Notre Dame courtesy of the wonderful Des Coulam

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve mentioned Andy Goldsworthy before, when talking about ephemarilty in music before and watching this made me think about it all over again.

I know that music is fleeting, temporary but our documenting of it undoes that ( not that I  think that is a negative thing ). But imagine if the documenting of that transitory moment could only be done by those there and not with recorded sound. If all you had was a description in words and sound told and made by those that witnessed it. How would it sound to you then? Would it be as strong or would it be altogether something greater drawn of the imagination?

 

Came across this fabulous article via the ever wonderful Des Coulam’s Sound Landscapes Blog – a site I thoroughly recommend you follow. I was particularly drawn to the last paragraph of this article.

‘“You never listen” is not just the complaint of a problematic relationship, it has also become an epidemic in a world that is exchanging convenience for content, speed for meaning. The richness of life doesn’t lie in the loudness and the beat, but in the timbres and the variations that you can discern if you simply pay attention.’

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.