If that Music or Just Another Radio
The sound of silence is the sound of nature, but the sound of nature is not silence. Silence will stretch on eternally while each sound no matter how long or short is only a micro-sound in the time scale of nature. Does this mean that it is pointless to produce a sound or that sound itself is unnatural? That is like asking is existence pointless or unnatural. Some will say yes to both, some will say yes to neither yet there are some who will argue both yes and no. It is an unanswerable question but all will agree that if something that exists infringes on something else’s existence then the infringer should be reigned in, but not destroyed. This can apply equally to sound as it can to existence.
The cacophony that is modern life infringes on existence. It infringes on nature’s silence because it is pointless. Modern life has become just another radio, tv, mobile phone ring tone in the middle of the street. It has become so cacophonous that people require these constant stimuli, but why? Why can people not sit back and listen to the sound of nature? The cacophony that is produced is, on the grand scheme of nature, pointless. What is wrong with a whispered conversation over a shouted one? A whispered conversation requires more attention but have people become so used to shouting that a whisper is inaudible? Whisper a person’s name in a crowd of screaming people and you will be heard by that person, yet scream their name and you wont be. This I admit is a slight embellishment of the truth but it has a grain of truth in it. Someone will pick out the nuance of their whispered name in noise because they are attuned to the voice, the whisper and their name yet a shout would just blend in.
The world and all its noise is but a flash in the silence of nature. If we must interrupt it it should have a point, a well-defined reason for the interruption. Would you barge into a wedding, a funeral or a family sitting together eating in their own home without a reason? No, that is common courtesy. So why should we break the silence of nature unless it is with good reason? There is no need for ring tones as long as a phone as a vibrate function, there is no reason to shout at the person you are trying to talk to if everyone else is talking in a whisper.
The point of this short essay is not to preach but for me to lay down my own ideas, ideas that have changed massively over the last year. I originally wanted to write bold loud music but I have gradually been turning away from that and I think today I have come to see why. Silence is what will become and what has always been. We are a brief cacophonous noise in the midst of this silence. If I break this silence it is to create something, something that I find beautiful or pleasurable not harsh and bold but quite and delicate. This idea has not only become apparent in my dynamics but in my pitches, but in hindsight I feel that it has always been within my pitches. A move of a semi-tone makes me shudder yet a tone feels distant, I think it is my desire to create something that only just fractures the silence bleeding into my pitches but then maybe it is the other way round. Maybe it is the pitches bleeding into the silence. A note is nature and a semi-tone, or smaller, is nature but a third is artificial.
People expect the cacophony of the modern world. This expectation has bleed into music in all its forms. Electro-acoustic music takes sounds from this cacophony and re-interprets them, sometimes successfully but rarely, while main-stream music enforces in someone the desire to turn it up, listen to the drums and ignore the subtly. Would a semi-tone change of one note be noticed in a track by Lady Gaga, Stereophonics or Metallica? I think not. There is a place for this music but it is not at the forefront. The nature of these is full of volume but not full of thought. These voluminous sounds are not constrained to mainstream music but are also in many classical works. Again, there is a place for it in some cases, but not in all.
What I believe I am trying to show myself and any who care to read is that nature should not be broken. A sound should come from nothing and go to nothing; that is the natural order. A sound that is there for the sake of itself has no place in the world. Unfortunately modern life seems to be filled with these sounds. Is that music or just another radio?