Teoría Incertidumbre #2
Alexander Scriabin, ANS synthesizer and Coil
In our first chapter we have been talking about the Russian synthesizer ANS. And before continuing to talk about a new instrument, I decided to dedicate this new program to try to give a little more context to such a finding.
The excerpts of works that we will listen to to explain more about the history of the ANS will be:
Simphony nº5 Prometeus, Poem of Fire (1910) op.60.
Coil – ANS (2004) 3CD’s disc. (CD1 Track1 & Track3)
It is absolutely impossible not to mention the Russian composer and pianist Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin (1872-1915), from whom they take their acronyms to name the photoelectric synthesizer.
Scriabin was interested in both theosophy (occult philosophy) and literary symbolism as in the work of Nietzsche, with the intention and a need to go beyond the materialism and industrialism of his time. I thought that through music humans could connect with the whole, this is the unity of the cosmos, with its rhythms and mysteries, believed in the divinity that was within humans, and that having developed his could bring listeners closer to this information through the sounds. Taking the nineteenth century theory of synaesthesia, which thought about the equivalence between smells, colors, sounds, etc., I fantasized about the possibility of building an atmosphere with machines that created smells, a keyboard that turned its notes into colors, and musical instruments, that made live a sensorial experience that transmitted this idea of the cosmic unit as a psychological resonator.
On the keyboard of Scriabin that equals or translates notes of a tonal scale with light frequencies ie colors. What he did was give a chromatic value to each note by ordering them according to Newton’s chromatic circle. The idea was to be able to SEE the sounds.
About the Symphony No. 5 Prometheus, Poem of Fire, we can comment that it is a work of his last stage where he was already more interested in certain atonality, moving away from the romantic musical era. The last works of Scriabin, from 1910 to 1915, are structured on harmonic elements instead of themes, usually variants of the so-called “mystical chord”:
(C-F sharp – B flat -E-A-D)
Scriabin’s pretensions were high, he really wanted to change the world through his works.
On the concepts of theosophy we can comment that Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, writer and Russian occultist, founded the Theosophical Society in the year 1875. It is said that she was a self-taught person and there is much mystery behind her knowledge. Thanks to this foundation, this knowledge could be spread internationally.
The principles of the Theosophical society can be summarized as forming a universal fraternity of humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or color, promoting the comparative study of religions, philosophies and science. Explore the unexplored laws of nature and the latent powers in man.
On the disc of Coil – ANS was made as a tribute to the synthesizer ANS, cataloged as experimental genre and cutting edge can also be labeled as drone music. Along with the 3CD’s included a DVD with animations by Peter Christopherson that aimed to make the opposite sense of what the synthesizer did, moving from music to images, and thus explore the subtleties of synesthesia by simply doing simple, elegant and subliminal chromatic exercises .
On the disc it can be said that the slow modulations in the sound / image relationship eventually defeat the perception and synesthetic thinking processes begin to expand, tuning our cognitive machinery in the mysterious waves of analogy and analogy