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Co-Exist arose from my reading of a theory of time proposed by Dr Bradford Skow of MIT in 2015. Dr Skow’s theory assumes a ‘block universe’: past, present and future already exist and are spread out in much the same way as we are spread out in space. Since this theory suggests that we are not located at a single time, it implies that elements of past, present and future exist simultaneously in our daily lives.
The piece explores the acoustic environment of Bristol's Clifton Village by presenting (or rather, suggesting sonically) the past, present and future, and demonstrating how these sounds interact with one another to evoke the concept of a ‘block universe’. In the central section for example, pastoral sounds of birdsong are interjected with mechanical noise from modern vehicles: thus associations with the past and present co-exist. The fluid transitions between sonic landscapes are crucial to the portrayal of this non- structured time, thus the route was carefully planned to ensure that as the sound world changes, the listener may begin to perceive elements of the next environment gradually, one ‘time’ blending into the next.
Listeners are also encouraged to reflect on the extent to which certain sounds carry associations of a particular time (consider the date-specificity of music heard on a radio for example, versus the abstract concept of playground noise representing the future), and to observe how they interact with each other and co-exist simultaneously in everyday society.
[ Electronic ]