press release

Join us at The Watermill Center on Friday, April 27 at 6:30 p.m. for a work-in-progress concert. Congruence, composed by Tristan Perich in residence with saxophonist Argeo Ascani, is a new piece for baritone saxophone and 1-bit electronics.

Continuing Perich's explorations in primitive electronic sound, this composition combines the live sound of 1-bit frequencies—synthesized by custom electronic circuits and on-stage speakers—with acoustic saxophone, performed by Argeo Ascani. Congruence represents an evolution of Perich's sound to the gritty lower frequencies, where tone breaks down and the electronics take on a visceral quality, complementing the physical presence of the saxophone's guttoral voice.

The event includes a short talk on the science behind 1-bit audio, and will be followed by a Q&A and reception with the artists.

About The Work and 1-bit Electronics

The simplest electronic tones can be created by sending on and off pulses of electricity to a speaker, effecting an oscillation at the desired pitch. These pulses are represented digitally in binary as 1-bit information, where a 1 or 0 signifies the corresponding electrical state. When working with 1-bit waveforms, data is equivalent to sound; no higher-level translation is needed.

The 1-bit tones are generated by programmed microchips, which become instruments in duets between human musicians and code. The most basic method of electronic sound production couples with similarly basic methods of acoustic sound production in classical instruments: vibrating strings, resonating wind chambers, oscillating percussive objects, etc. While 1-bit sound is also the palette of aggressive electric alarm clocks, I find its primitive timbre inspiringly fresh and mysteriously organic when combined with these traditional instruments. Perich’s works are about these relationships between simple sonic systems and the point found at their intersection.

About Tristan Perich and Argeo Ascani

Tristan Perich's (New York) work is inspired by the aesthetic simplicity of math, physics and code. The WIRE Magazine describes his compositions as "an austere meeting of electronic and organic." 1-Bit Music, his 2004 release, was the first album ever released as a microchip, programmed to synthesize his electronic composition live. His latest circuit album, 1-Bit Symphony (Cantaloupe, 2010) has received critical acclaim, called "sublime" (New York Press), and the Wall Street Journal said "its oscillations have an intense, hypnotic force and a surprising emotional depth." His award winning work coupling 1-bit electronics with traditional forms in both music (Active Field, Observations) and visual art (Machine Drawings, Microtonal Wall) has been presented around the world, from Sonar and Ars Electronica to the Whitney Museum and bitforms gallery.

Argeo Ascani plays saxophone. He has played many pieces, in many places and with many people.

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Tristan Perich, Argeo Ascani
Music Performance
April 27, 2012 - 6:30pm