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  »  New  About Timbre and Audio...  Timbres and Audio...  Playback Listening  Forum     5  25022  05-03-2011
05-01-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 16196
Reply to: 16196
Playback as an expressive tool: what are your listening objectives?
fiogf49gjkf0d

People who know me know that if I person does audio then it does not automatically imply that he is my best friend. I generally do not bring “just audio people” in my home and if I do then they are selected people who I feel might have a potential to understand what I do. Still among the people who visit me and hear my installation I had very seldom visitors who really got what my playback did. People liked or did not like (mostly liked) this or that aspect of audio in the way how it enters in my room. I always ask people to criticize my sound and point out what they would change if it was their playback. People talk about what they think but with all honesty they very seldom understand what is going on.

Yesterday I had a visitor who truly surprised me. Ironically he is an industry guy and we met a few years back at CES. I was acted in my favorite style as I usually did at Hi-Fi shows – protecting my reputation of intentional jerk of mystery and insulting anything insultable, thanks God there was a slot of it at CES.  The guy has his own room, I visited it and I think we had ether quarrel of something like this, anyhow we firmly were convinced about itch other that we are idiots. Well, I was not convinced that the guy was idiot but rather his audio products were crap and I think I did express it very non-ambiguously.  In few month after the show somehow we got in touch, probably it was via the site I do not remember how, but  since then we do maintain a contact and once a year he visit me. As an industry person the guy had zero interests to me but as a person I like him, in fact I do consider him as sensible listener, not many like this out there.

So, the guy visited me yesterday and he truly surprised me as he was the very first person who “got” what I have been preaching for year in audio. I was playing for me my favorite selection and he suddenly told me: ” You know Romy,  I just realized that you are playing Beethoven, Bruckner and Brahms, you play different interpretation, different orchestras and different conductors, but no matter what different music and styles you play your playback sounds like you Own Sound.” All that I replied was “I know.”

What my visitor mention is very much the abstract of my entire audio interest – using different methods of Sound interpretation by playback to conceive a new listening consciousness.  I played a few more fragments for him and then asked him to identify what from his point of view would constitute my Own Sound. He surprised me again. After some thinking he said: “Your playback is stressing drama by idiosyncratic use of texture and colors of sounds.” I was surprised as it was close from how I intend it to be, I am not absolutely agree with his formulation but it was close.

What I am trying to do with my playback?  This is a big subject and I can talk about it for hours. In short – my objectives and my accomplishments with playback are located at Two Level, after the Level One is accomplished then the actions at Level Two are possible.  The level One implies an artificial inducing in a listener an hyper-inspirational state, what Russians call Dostoevsky Syndrome. In Western world the Dostoevsky Syndrome has no equivalent.  Dostoevsky Syndrome is very specific  and  highly constructive intensification of reality that brings a person by venture of artistic exposure at elevated level  of self-reflection.  In Western world the closest thing I know is considers as a medical anomaly and frequently called Stendhal Syndrome, thought I personally recognize a lot of difference between Dostoevsky and Stendhal Syndromes.

So, at the Level One the “drama” is pumped and listener awareness is being moved to the state of hyper-reflection, then the Level Two kick in. The Level Two is a Value of the Message. It is simple and it is very complicated. At the level two the Value of Message is not only the messages it s but also the Value of a Listener.  While the Level One is maintaining control a Listener is not a casual observer but rather a co-creator of musical event. A Listener is a consumer AND the creator, he has full control over event while is being fully condoled by the event. It is imposable to get it until your mind is moved out by the Level One. Partially musicians can experience it. If you play an instrument then you experience the vibration of instrument deck by own body and at certain level of play, when you do not need to worry about playing techniques anymore the musician gets a feeling that his  body create sound. I said “partially” it is possible with some musicians as they are in fact do create sound. During the listening audio there is no event of creation while one listens and all elements of listener’s own cooperation with performing music is a pure fiction of a listener mind tensed and emancipated by controled (!!!) Dostoevsky Syndrome.

So, the “drama” that my visitor mentioned was not wrong but there is a lot of more to it as a drama for sake of drama is a freak show, same sort of a tabloid highlight. A compelling, stimulating and “loaded” message is necessary for mind generally and for a mind tweaked into hyper-reaction and hyper-reflection of Dostoevsky’s state in particularly.

If somebody cares then I would propose to share what are your objectives with your playback.  I would like to keep this thread free from talking about the practical methods to accomplish it but more about your definition of success of your playback installation.

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
05-05-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
skushino
Seattle, WA
Posts 93
Joined on 07-07-2004

Post #: 2
Post ID: 16212
Reply to: 16196
Your playback is stressing drama by idiosyncratic use of texture and colors of sounds
fiogf49gjkf0d
This is one of my favorite posts on your site.

My daily playback system uses Tannoy 15" Gold drivers in large back-loaded Autograph cabinets.  It isn't used for critical listening, rather it's mostly on in the background playing my local NPR radio stations.  The sound is far from 'accurate' and 'neutral'.  It's lacking in freq extremes, a little too rounded, and not especially transparent. They don't measure especially well.  And yet the sound from this system never fails to make me smile from enjoyment.  What it delivers for me is an almost psychedelic tonal color and a 'bouncy' dynamic ability.  They play well at both soft and loud volumes.  I really love music played through this system for these reasons.

My horn system has ~10x the money and effort invested compared to the Tannoys, but to be honest it fails to deliver the enjoyment I hear through my big Tannoys.  My horns are way more transparent, clear, and dynamic in comparison, but the lack of tonal color is annoying in the extreme.  There is a clear, almost blanched characteristic to the playback.  My goal is seeking to implement the virtues of the Tannoys - especially the psychedelic tonal color and 'bounciness' - with my horns.  Many years ago when I listened to Macondo, even though it wasn't fully operating, I remember the unique and idiosyncratic playback.  This was before the injection and fundamental channels, and there were numerous other differences to your present set-up.  Still, the lesson for me is that the interesting sound was possible even without your Tannoy injection channel. 

I'm fortunate in having the big Tannoys at home to use as a performance benchmark to progress towards.   Success for me will be after I learn to move my horn sound in this direction. 
05-09-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 3
Post ID: 16232
Reply to: 16196
Another type of Remote Control
fiogf49gjkf0d

 Romy the Cat wrote:
Just wonderful! I raise my glass to Karl Leonhard!

Back in 1984 I was 16. At that time I was dating a girl who was 27. She was getting her psychology degree and was making some extra cash as a wedding singer during weekends. During one of weddings we hook up and spent a few months around each other. The most memorable trophies of that relationship were some here books that I read at that time. One of the books was the most impressive: it was  “Akzentuierte Personlichkeiten” by Karl Leonhard.  Karl Leonhard was German psychiatrist who specialized in various aspects of psychiatry. I never care about the psychiatry field and I did not care about the diagnostic and classification aspect of the “Akzentuierte Personlichkeiten”. There was however one moment of the book that absolutely fascinated me.

There are normal people, whatever it is. There are people with psychotic illnesses, sort of pathologic cases – the people with illnesses destructive for themselves and for society. And there is a wide spectrum of Akzentuierte Personlichkeiten or translating in English it might be called “Accentuated Personalities”. The Accentuated people are individuals whose perception developed some sort of emphasize or hyper-intensity in one field or another – people who has it are in a “no man lend” between normal people and pathology. I would leave aside the medical aspect of the notion that Leonhard was focused – I have no use or interest in it. The most fascinating part for me was that Leonhard was running across all greatest creative minds of mankind history and clamming that most of their creative action, particularly in artistic field were during the period when they entered the pure state of Akzentuierte perception of reality. This notion absolutely hypnotized me and for many years to come I was fascinated with ability of a mind to enter and exit the Accentuated state, expending and stimulating creative capacity of a person.  It happened historically that I do not do drugs, alcohol of any other stimulators but I know that I am susceptive to the Dostoevsky Syndrome that I described in my post above…

In 1997, after many years of practicing audio I “got” that Accentuated State might be induced by Audio. I remember that as I discover it I was looking at all of my audio surrounding at that time with absolute apathy. I did not know HOW to do it at that time but I felt that there is some kind of mechanism in audio that can manage the force of Accentuation. At that time I was rapidly reevaluating my musical interests and my audio interests. I remember that in summer 2000, when I was very tightly socialized with Vladimir Lamm (and Lamm electronic of that time was very effective tool in my journey), I was asking Vladimir of exist any know to him “remote control” that would allow to moderate the level of engagement of music listening. Vladimir was in his usual state of thinking and suggested that he can’t give it as he was very restricted by the cost of his amplifiers – a typical BS that I hated in Lamm.

In 2002 I had more or less capable playback. I had 4 Lamm’s ML2.0 multi-amping very early version of Macondo. At that time, in 2001-2002 I was in my audio world in transition between listening of others to listening of myself.  I clearly understood that the questions I have in audio reproduction do not have answers or even “publicity” in external world and I need look deeper into my own interests to get satisfaction. At that time there was no Macondo but there was weekly changing ideas and experiments. I was baying drivers and horns, trying to get what I was looking for. What I was looking for not truly Sound but rather an algorithm that would make myself involuntary to temporary enter the state of Accentuationof Perception by experiencing Sound. From pure audio perspective what I did at that time would be insane and had no justification but I did not care too much about sanity but rather about my reasoning. At that time I had developed a number of purely metal exercises performing which stimulate perception and make it oversensitive and very valuable to sonic irritations…

One day something happened and my playback went absolutely wild. It was normal my Sound for that time but as music was playing Sound physically made me focus on itself. It was very interesting as Sound itself was able to navigate my attention.  Regardless the music I was playing (!!!) Sound physically garbed me and forced me to subordinate me to it’s force. It was very feeling I felt very gratifies as audio person, even a bit concern about practical benefit of my accomplishment and it’s implication to my mental state. Surprise, surprise but I lost it in a few days or so. That state of Sound able to in the flesh remote control my listening attention never come back but I had my vindication that whatever I was striving to get is possible by audio means.

How far my playback and its capacity from that state? I would say not too close, even I had now much more interesting and capable Sound. I can write 1000 words describing the specific differences between Sound I have now and then but it will not be useful. For the 10 years that passed I changed, my interests and my objectives changed and it is highly possible that today different mechanism would be able to trigger control of me then it was 10 years back. Russians say that you can’t step in the same river twice, and I am not trying to….

Still, my today state of mind and interests does not removed my attention and concentration on the fact that Audio can and shall remote-induce in a listener that state of Akzentuierte, the state of temporary mental instability that able to open a communication gate with very different  inner-person reflective power.  If I knew what I know now then I would not waste my time with what I did before and in very young age would study how to compose music.  I do compose music now sometimes but I have no idea what to do with it as I am musically illiterate. Well, this boat I guess has sailed, it is what it is and now I am in mid 40s, doing audio...

I do have a hope that sometime and somehow I will hit the Accentuated Remote Control somehow. If do then known what I know now I am sure I will not lose it anymore. I hope that it happen a few days before a stroke or heart attack sends me to cemetery…

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
05-10-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,145
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 4
Post ID: 16235
Reply to: 16232
LSD23
fiogf49gjkf0d
Very freaking interesting, Romy.

Way back when acid was still legal, I was "peaking" on some of Sandos' finest just as Beethoven 9 chorus came on the crappy KLH portable record player/hi-fi, while I was studying, trying to figure out differential calculus, which I was struggling with at the time.  To make a short-ish story short, the math "fused" with the music, I was totally overwhelmed and engulfed, and the whole thing "became clear" to me.  I went on to ace a narative problem set in the calc comprehensives, and I still love B9; but not like that.
 
Subsequent experiments yielded various results, some of them related to the "melded" Music experience.  What I "took away" from all this is mostly too personal to share briefly -if at all - but I do know for certain that there are lots of ways to gather experience, including the "heightened awareness" methods, and a person can indeed train himself to "shift" awareness, for whatever it's worth, "worth" being the subject of another conversation.

Truth and Method, anyone?

Best regards,
Paul S
05-10-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 454
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 5
Post ID: 16236
Reply to: 16235
Jack Herrer
fiogf49gjkf0d
I once got a letter from Amsterdam with a prime Jack Herrer marijuana. I idiotically (at the end smartly?)
smoked waaaaay to much. I somehow managed to keep my consciousness from collapsing with a tone of sugar.
Passing the "bottleneck" I was on the other side. It was a sunny early autumn day. A bliss came...
It lasted only few hours. I've never managed to comeback to that state. Still good marijuana
does open some way for me to gain an extra depth in listeting.

Very much agree on the right training. Not confusing ends with means is crucial here.
Helpers are only what they are-just helpers, however noble they may seem to be.

Cheers,
N-set

PS Paul, I can help with the calculus if needed :-)



Cheers,
Jarek
05-25-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,540
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 6
Post ID: 16329
Reply to: 16196
The Sound of Decadent Delicacy
fiogf49gjkf0d
Listening a lot of recordings lately I keep thinking about my Sound. A few weeks back my visitor characterized it as “stressing drama by idiosyncratic use of texture and colors of sounds”. I find it accurate description but not my style of description. People who accustom to me know that I tend to abstract the practice that I have conquest. So, I keep thinking about more accurate definition of my Sound and I think I have found it, in part with the help of Tullio Serafin and Bruckner.

Last week I had an audio visitor why was familiar with Sound of my playback two month ago. Listening it again he said “You converted your playback from great Classical Playback to great Romantic Playback”. That was very accurate description but how about to combine it with further “idiosyncratic use of texture and colors of sounds”. Thinking about it I got it.

Oscar Wilde once said "Classicism is the subordination of the parts to the whole; decadence is the subordination of the whole to the parts." So, the Sound that I am getting out playback in some way is an indigence of Decadent Delicacy, where individual sounds not just shape the whole but like a hologram contain the whole…

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
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  »  New  About Timbre and Audio...  Timbres and Audio...  Playback Listening  Forum     5  25022  05-03-2011
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