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Smolders, Jos : Gaussian Transient (Megaphone) (Non Visual Objects (NVO))

Jos Smolders is an abstract soundsculptor using a vast array of electroacoustic technique to create diverse sonic constructions and amazing aural environments.

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product information:

Label: Non Visual Objects (NVO)
Catalog ID: NVO 015
Squidco Product Code: 10216

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2008
Country: Austria
Packaging: Cardstock Foldover in a clear vinyl sleeve


Jos Smolders

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Artist Biographies:

"Jos Smolders (Deurne, The Netherlands, October 20th, 1960) studied architecture at the Delft Technical University but quit and continued the musical tape experiments of his childhood. He started musicological studies of electronic and recorded music, was six years co-editor of Vital Magazine. Active in the underground electronic scene, founding member of the renowned Dutch electroacoustic ensemble THU20, he released his own music on cassette, LP and CD. He now works as a sound designer and composer in Tilburg (The Netherlands). Founder of online magazine and mp3 label Earlabs. Owner of EARLabs Studios."

-Discogs (

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track listing:

1. A HUM UMENT was written 7:15

2. in that very narrative passage he sat dejected 3:12

3. parts of the novel. T of a man as photograph 6:18

4. myster t 3:17

5. the same sophical things 4:42

6. pieces of writings of the the writings of the names 2:27

7. a volume perplex 7:13

8. the Journal of secret scribing and hiding 3:02

9. journal contents 6:23

10. as yet 3:48

11. is only one half of the toge story 8:40

12. the first scenes and feelings 11:16
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"There are few sound artists out there that rival the diverse and extensive modus operandi that Jos Smolders brings to his work. Recently, Smolders releases have focused around self-similar sequences, loose narratives, or some kind of overarching central theme that ties the pieces together. Harking back to his early working methods here (Freebasing A Is For Me) and simply homing in on the sounds themselves with apparently diffuse and disconnected themes, Smolders brings us into a world of shape-shifting foci. Here, sound is allowed to just simply exist, so essentially, what you hear is what you hear, without any un-neccesary frills or grand conceptual statements, this is an act of pure minimalism, simple, and concise.

Each piece is a meditation on particular kinds of sounds..the general industrial ambience of a train station for instance,the lowing of cows, or the deep inner workings of a harmonium, recordings of conversations in a street café, or the micro fine clicking and grating of a lighter. These raw, elemental features pull in and out of sharp focus, lending the work a filmic quality, and touching on territory explored by the Hafler Trio, surreal, yet intimately familiar, fused and juxtaposed, obscure, yet strangely familiar. Smolders' recordings are taut and sharply defined, and technically about as perfect as it gets, particularly when listened to under headphones, one gets the feeling of actually being in these eerie, magnificent environments.

On repeat listenings, it appears that Gaussian Transient (Megaphone) is a linear piece, spliced into segments, each segment being titled after the work of Post Fluxus artist, Tom Phillips, one of a group of artists in the late 1960's who used words as images, by setting up a text, and then erasing various parts of it to form a kind of obtuse poetry..this technique, no doubt influenced by the works of Gysin and Burroughs at the time, feeds into Smolders' work, as his pieces similarly appear formed by a process of reduction and erasure. Overall this is a gritty, concise and bold series of recordings, rendered by one of the masters of the genre, Gaussian Transient (Megaphone) will, for me, be listened to again and again. A true masterpiece."-bgn, white line

"By the end of the 80s I produced my first vinyl release, "Freebasing A For Is Me". An album completely free of any preconception, built as an abstract expressionist soundsculpture. Most of the releases after Freebasing have been based on certain material or a working method or structural principles. Sometimes because I needed to contain myself within certain boundaries but most times because I had a certain subject of research in mind (like mono/stereo, or white noise, or the abstraction of human speech). With this collection of compositions I return to the emptiness of "Freebasing". Every composition is just what it is. There are no thoughts other than their sonic relations within the construction. I travel from a hospital ward directly into the intestines of a harmonium. From a street with cafés into a busy railroad, into a lighter into, ... et cetera. After the endless process of zooming in and out to get every sound in place I gave a lot of time to the production of this disc. New software (Reaper) has given me better and more precise tools for getting the exact sound that I wanted. About the track titles. I have always been intrigued by language, words and meaning. Several of my seminal works are based on the human voice and on language. Tom Phillips is a British artist working a lot with letters, words and typography. One work particularly intrigued me. During the 70s Mr. Phillips worked on a book in which he reworked existing pages of books. By painting or drawing over the text he erased most of it but left certain word combinations intact. That way "poems" were created. While composing these constructions I learned about Mr. Phillips's work and felt a connection. I too cut parts out of a large "page". That part of a much longer recording is set into a new context but still conveys the meaning it had inside the original context. That's how I came to choose the text bits of one of these "humuments" (No. 6 from the 1st edition) and use them as the titles for the tracks."-Joe Smolders

This album has been reviewed on our magazine:

The Squid
The Squid's Ear!

Get additional information at White Line
Related Categories of Interest:

Organized Sound and Sample Based Music
lowercase, reductionist, micro-improv, sound improv, onkyo sound
Limited Editions & Out of Print

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