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Tag Archives: Moog

There’s a big bucket of everything going on in this record. Carlos uses up to 48 “Dolbyized” tracks (including electronic/quasi-classical/ambient music composed and performed by Carlos along with environmental recordings including surf, birds, frogs, lightning, wind, rain, and anything else Mother Nature can cook up) at any given point in this monstrous psychoacoustic experiment. The whole effect simultaneously soothes and challenges the old noggin’ in the most curious way.

Here’s a simple way to describe it. Take one of Walter Carlos’ traditional early-electronic Moog pieces and mix it with one or two discs from the Environments series. Make sure they’re smooshed together nicely then board ’em on Willy Wonka’s Psychedelic Boat Trip.

Only attempt in the company of a responsible adult. Or a frog bong.

Sonic Seasonings is a Double LP with four different “songs”, which are as follows:

Side 1: Spring (22:09 Minutes)

Side 2: Summer (21:31 Minutes)

Side 3: Fall (20:56 Minutes)

Side 4: Winter (20:31 Minutes)

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Click here to download Sonic Seasonings from vinyl at 320 kbps

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The album cover was altered to say Wendy after Carlos underwent sex reassignment surgery. Note that cartoon Carlos is still male.

Click here for a random Rebuilt Tranny post!

There are a lot of tasty fun facts about Walter Carlos. First off, he was the she that composed the Clockwork Orange soundtrack. The second is that Walter, later Wendy, is the only Father and Mother of Electronic Music. However, the most mysterious tid bit that stuck out in the hard-hitting Wikipedia article about Carlos was two curious words: Faraday Cage.

"Scientist" in a tiny, tiny Faraday Cage.

Scientific pursuits for the benefit of mankind.

A Faraday Cage is a special room that’s typically used to protect electronic devices such as industrial computer equipment from outside sources of electronic interence like lightning strikes or power surges. The Faraday Cage comes in handy for NASA when maintaining Tom Hanks’ neuronet processor during his bi-annual checkup. And, as the previous photo illustrates, it’s critical for protecting fedora-donning dumb dumbs from homemade tesla coils.

As any audiophile will tell you, the foundation of solid sound is clean electricity. Improper grounding and interference from appliances sucking your Jiggawatts can really throw a monkeybone into gears of the best-planned stereo system.

One of my apartments in Clifton during my college days had ungrounded outlets. This really played havoc on my home theater’s subwoofer by causing the most terrible buzzthumping. The only remedy was continually lassoing the connective cable around my apartment until it meshed with the friendly electromagnetic frequency of the day. Or something like that.

Getty Images just spit in your mom's hair. Pictured is Walter pre-op.

On her website Carlos’ explains how her NYC neighbor’s mood lighting would mess with her home studio recordings:

Oh, yes, those are the remote controls for the various tape machines that you see on the far left, and just above, on the meter housing for the console, is a pair of Phase Linear Autocorrelators. These were a pretty decent single ended noise reduction devices that we had to use during the late 70’s due to power buzzes that came from the light dimmers in the brownstone next door (not amusing). I’d nearly forgotten about that nightmare, since (as I just mentioned) the console is now immune to such things, and the new studio, in being a genuine Faraday Cage (conductive walls, ceiling and floor, tied to common ground) is truly free from essentially all external signal contaminants. 

Carlos' Frankensteinian Sound Cruncher

Just imagine Wendy flipping her shit as she went through countless wires trying to figure out which one was the harbinger of the dreaded analog buzz. However, she couldn’t freak out too hard because violent convulsions might, ahem, rip out the stiches that kept her womanhood roaring.

So basically Carlos was and is a mad scientist. She still toils her hours away by torturing electronic equipment into screaming the desired tone in her gigantic, eletronically-inert box. But we shouldn’t fear her for, as you will see after listening to By Request, the ends justify the end. And that’s always what’s most important…right?

Wendy Carlos: The Original Rebuilt Tranny

Wendy Carlos: The Original Rebuilt Tranny

Click here to download By Request at 320 kbps

Tracklist

A1 Three Dances From “Nutcracker Suite” 5:20
A2 Dialogues For Piano And 2 Loudspeakers 4:00
A3 Episodes For Piano And Electronic Sound 5:50
A4 Geodesic Dance (Electronic Etude) 3:21
A5 Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 In F Major 5:50
B1 “Little” Fugue In G Minor 3:44
B2 What’s New, Pussycat? 2:05
B3 Eleanor Rigby 2:06
B4 Wedding March 1:12
B5 Pompous Circumstances 12:00

 

*download below*

Here’s two video previews of lighter songs with the full album for download below.  Take a moment to check the vids out (they’re only about a minute apiece.) The longer songs get pretty far out with the composition and effects Tomita uses.  I really can’t get enough of early Moog electronic music…especially pieces with a quirky Japanese twist.

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Click here to download Pictures at an Exhibition from vinyl

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Tracklist

A1   Promenade 1:30  
A2   The Gnome 3:12  
A3   Promenade 1:02  
A4   The Old Castle 5:18  
A5   Promenade 0:34  
A6   Tuileries 0:55  
A7   Bydlo 3:17  
A8   Promenade 1:00  
A9   Ballet Of The Chicks In Their Shells 1:05  
B1   The Two Jews 3:04  
B2   Limoges/ Catacombs 3:56  
B3   Cum Mortuis In Lingua Mortua 2:06  
B4   Baba Yaga (Hut On Fowls’ Legs) 3:50  
B5   Great Gate Of Kiev 6:14