log 007

tape loops… just do it.

I don’t really know what else to say. Most DAWs like Renoise, Ableton and Fruity Loops etc, are loop based. There’s no coincidence that the early trackers before them were shaped as it’s predecessor – the reel-to-reel tape. Our tools for making and listening to music shapes the way we experience, understand and define what music is at a given moment in time. There’s still no universal agreement on what music really is. It can be explained in so many different ways. But let’s say we decide to agree on the most common view in the west upon what music is. Composer Edgar Varese said something like ‘what is music but organised sound?’ Then it makes total sense that a lot of composers would say they work with time or temporality. But who doesn’t? Using delay or reverb is also manipulating our perception of time. If you use Logic you experience time and sound in a linear way, often measured in bars, in Ableton you experience them through clips and 4,76 cm is 1s of cassette tape. The first tapeloops I made (check the clip below) were about 22-25cm, that is a loop almost 5s long.

When working physically with something I seem to get a better understanding through my experience. No surprise there’s even a name for this method: learning by doing. Last night when attending an open lecture by electroacoustic composer Yvette Janine Jackson she confirmed my own experience and relation to workflow when moving from analog to digital ‘A tactile memory relationship through all works even when working with computers later on.’ A mutual understanding is that DIY cultures of all sorts have one thing in common and that is to oppose something….no wonder the cassette culture of today is flourishing when a lot of what we do to define ourselves is through excluding..welll..that’s a topic of it’s own… Back to the tape loops, all you need is what you see in the first pic. Find the set of tools that works best for you. It all comes down to what kind of loops you want.






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