Meta-musics : an exploration of hybridity and post-genre in experimental music

Publication Type:
Thesis
Issue Date:
2008
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NO FULL TEXT AVAILABLE. This thesis contains 3rd party copyright material. ----- This doctoral project consists of a body of electronic music and audio/visual work, spanning the period 2001-06, accompanied by a reflective exegesis. The creative work manifests itself in a wide range of forms - stereo and surround audio, audio-visual, disciplines - music, media arts and cinema, and presentation contexts - live performance, acousmatic presentation, installation, broadcast and cinematic screening. The primary focus of the enquiry is the development and maturation of a coherent, hybridised music practice, informed by the composer's long-term engagement in diverse sound cultures, contemporary digital tools and a global community of experimental music practice. The communities of practice which inform the work are western art music; independent popular music; post-punk and post-rock; intelligent dance music and re-mixing; electroacoustic and acousmatic musics; film and television sound design; environmental audio and field recording; experimental music, and postdigital music cultures. The creative works serve as practical examinations of how the seemingly disparate compositional and production processes associated with these fields can be adapted and synthesized into a coherent and successful new music practice. Together, the works and exegesis provide insights into the various dimensions in which hybridity can be understood in respect of music - for example, in compositional process, production, media, performance practices and presentation contexts. The exegesis constructs a critical overview of the ecology of experimental music practices in Australia from the 1950s to the time of writing and an illumination of how the various compositional processes and ideas in the folio enter into dialogue with those practices. It situates the author within this field of practice and outlines the development in his compositional thinking over the past 20 years. In doing so, it provides insights into the hegemonic ideas of the contemporary classical tradition, the role of institutions in perpetuating these ideas and how the experimental music community has negotiated these power relationships. Finally the exegesis suggests that musical practices are becoming increasingly hybrid and illuminates how online, peer-to-peer networks, file-sharing and Web 2.0 developments are critical drivers in moving towards an understanding of music from a 'post-genre' perspective.
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