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MxLL – Thomas Stone

Thomas Stone is an electroacoustic composer and musician from London.

His practice focuses on live performance, reconciling disparate influences such as his tinnitus, false memories, the physical effect of sound, victorian séance, bass music and 20th century composition.

For Musicity x Low Line, Thomas created a piece in response to the space of Ewer Street.

Here, he shares his insights:

 

I was struck by the brick work structure of the railway arches alongside Ewer Street and how this overwhelming mass covered an ancient burial ground, sat across the border of the Liberty Of The Clink, was the point live stock was brought to by train for slaughter and more recently has been used to host all night raves.

I could see all this embodying many of the themes I explore in my music – the influence of past, the monumental, fragility, altered states and forms of transference.

The area was very much a line one crosses into something or somewhere else. I then discovered the theme for the London Festival of Architecture was Boundaries so it seemed perfect to build my composition on this.

I liked the idea that the some of boundaries on Ewer Street were akin to the line of the horizon - a constant despite journeying to it, while others represented an abrupt and profound shift in experience.

I also refer to my live practice as blurring the boundaries between acoustic and electronic sounds so again it made sense to make this a key theme in my commission.

I liked the idea of duetting with myself – playing along to a digital render of a previous acoustic performance.

I used long tones to create dissonances against the simple, pulsing progressions of the two contrabassoons. Not quite at odds, but not quite aligned.

I wanted the drum machine kicks to gradually go out of sync as if a mix is falling away and going awry and I wanted the snare drum vibrations to consume and overtake the synthesiser tones driving them.

 

Credits:

(Two contrabassoons + electronics, drum machine, analogue mono synth & activated snare drum.)

Composed and performed by Thomas Stone.

Produced by Angèle David-Guillou.

Recorded by David Rodger at Tramways Recording Studio.

 

Concurrence for Ewer Street’ by Thomas Stone releases June 1 as part of London Festival of Architecture.

To listen to ‘Concurrence for Ewer Street’, open the Musicity x Low Line Web App and go to Ewer Street!

Musicity x Low Line is commissioned by Better Bankside, Team London Bridge, Blue Bermondsey.

With thanks to: London Festival of Architecture, Flanagan Lawrence Architects, ARUP.

Photo credit: Thomas Stone.