The invention of the Theremin in 1928 embodies a never fulfilled vision for the future of music. Theremin players are retronauts, explorers of past utopias of sound and technology. Playing the Theremin is a major challenge, not so much because of the unique physical principles applied in the construction of the instrument, but because of the extreme musicality required to play in tune. Theremin recordings are rare and precious. Each one of the following recordings, produced between 2005 and 2010, is a labour of outstanding musicianship and a quest for the essence of sound itself.
Length: 60 minutes
All these recordings are distributed under a Creative Commons license. I’m not hosting any of these recordings. Please check the playlist for artists download links and license details.
(German) Notiz zur Lizenz: Alle Stücke sind unter Creative Commons Lizenz. Bitte die einzelnen Tracks ansehen für detaillierte Infos.
- Title: A Tale For Lancinant Screws – 3:34
Artist: Meczûp (Cihan Gulbudak)
Release: Hanging from the Purgatory’s Pendulum
Label: Editora Do Porto
About: As the author of this release put it: “Theremin is the deepest of all mysteries. Reveal yourself in the depths of self-questioning.” Smooth, beautiful, hypnotic theremin reflections.
- Title: Kompat Project test recording – 15:57
Artist: Krisztina Zsolnai, Gabor Varadi
Release: Kompat Project test recording
About: “Krisztina Zsolnai (“Silk”) on theremin & live fx treatments with laptop, and Gabor Varadi on guitar and loop sampler. This improvisation meant to be a test recording.”
- Title: Under The Porcelain – 24:41
Artist: Good Noise Bad Noise vs Duet For Theremin And Lap Steel
Release: Live Manatees
Label: Earth Monkey Productions
About: “Recorded at The Belmont Arts Center, Pensacola, Florida (also featuring Joseph Jones)”
- Title: Live at Unbalanced Connection 42 – 7:50
Artist: Hal McGee, Dave Fuglewicz and Paramutual Operator
Release: Experimental Music Collection 2007 Part2
Label: Hal McGee Tapes
About: “Excerptage of live performance recording at the University of Florida School of Music, Room 102, on Friday, November 9, 2007. Hal McGee on Moog Etherwave Theremin, circuit bent Casio Rapman, cassette field recordings from the hours preceding the show, circuit bent Casio SK-1, shortwave radio, Moog MF-102 Ring Modulator, and Moog MF-104 Analog Delay. The performance was actually about 10-11 minutes long. At one point during the performance I must have bumped the Open/Close button on the front of the Harman/Kardon TD 420 cassette deck that I was using to record the show… As soon as I noticed I resumed recording. I can barely notice where it stops and starts again. Any way, I think that it is a killer recording of a performance that at the time I did not like too much, because I couldn’t hear it well (stage monitor was not positioned properly and not turned up loud enough).”
- Title: Evoked Potentials (signal-to-noise Ratio) – 5:51
Artist: Cage Cabarrett
Label: Turbinicarpus Records
About: “Cage Cabarrett are Rubina Gois and Andre Faustino. They are the “musical dice players” (Musikalisches Wurfelspiel); the followers of John Cage, Karlheinz Stockhauzen, Pierre Boulez and Witold Lutoslawski; the “random” music performers; the explorers of aleatoric music.”
- Title: Scratching While Breathing in a Theremin Choir – 2:00
Artist: Rob Steady (Stephane Obadia)
Release: Ask No Lies
About: “When you go through the reviews Stephane received for his obadia-release with ADIM, you’ll find critics being confused about how to judge his music. is it danceable, does it move my butt? might stèph even be innit for popmusic as you can always find a moment of melody to stick to? or are there more academical reasons, something about recycling, glitch-asthetics and stuff? thing is, as we here at 12rec believe, stéphane prefers fooling around with genres. if you listen to the hot new rob steady EP, you’ll find him getting more abstract and experimental.”
Illustration © A. Ortiz – Lokomotive, 2006 – CC-BY