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Perrey-Kingsley - The In Sound From Way Out!
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Vanguard VRS-9222

Unidentified Flying Object
The Little Man from Mars
Cosmic Ballad
Swan's Splashdown
Countdown at 6
Barnyard in Orbit

Spooks in Space
Girl from Venus
Electronic Can-Can
Jungle Blues from Jupiter
Computer in Love
Visa to the Stars


Here are a dozen electronic pop tunes. They are the electrifying good-time music of
the coming age, the switched-on dance music that will soon be it. This is the lively
answer to the question that puzzles—and who knows, even frightens—people who
have heard the serious electronic compositions of recent years and wonder, is this
the music of the future? As for that avant-garde wing, we say more power to it. But
there are other things in the future, such as pleasure. And so presented here is the
electronic "Au Go Go" that might be heard soon from the juke boxes at the
interplanetary way stations where space ships make their rest stops. The idiom is
strange and yet familiar; here a touch of rock, there a touch of bosa nova, a whiff of
the blues in one piece and a whiff of Tchaikowsky in another. But these atoms of pop
music are exploded into fresh patterns. They outline a strange new sound world, yet
one in which we can feel at home. The future is upon us, they say, and the future is
fun.

The perpetrators of this riot of new sounds are Jean Jacques Perrey and Gershon
Kingsley.

Jean Jacques Perrey, who set out to master the machines that threatened to be the
masters of men, was born in 1929 in the North of France. From his early childhood he
showed a strong passion for science and music. He was to be a doctor, but music
had the greater gravitational pull, and he finally devoted himself to electronic music.
Then during a trip to the United States in 1965, he met Gershon Kingsley. The two felt
an immediate magnetic attraction, rising out of their common interest in how music and
electronics could add to the joy of life.

Gershon Kingsley has many musical trades and is a master of all of them. Having
studied at the Los Angeles Conservatory, Columbia University and the Juilliard School
of Music, he is a man of wide culture and a gifted composer of classical music. He is
also a respected figure on Broadway, as arranger and conductor of La Plume de mon
tante, Fly Blackbird,
and The Cradle Will Rock revival. He has done the
arrangements for many notable Vanguard albums, ranging from Netania Davrath's New
Songs of the Auvergne
and Jan Peerce's Neapolitan Serenade to the hilarious,
swinging Mozart After Hours.

Kingsley and Perrey decided to pool their talents to produce a record of electronic
musical joy and wit, Kingsley had long had the idea of "bringing electronic music to the
public." Perrey wanted "to take the mystery out of the legend that says electronic
music is an art that is esoteric, exclusively-reserved for a few initiates, an elite of
avant-garde intellectuals and artists." He adds, "I think that for some years electronic
music has been going up a one-way street." Both he and Kingsley agree that "it
deserves to be raised to the level of a popular music, a music designed for fun and
relaxation." And so Vanguard Records set up a laboratory in New York for the
Perrey-Kingsley experimental researches.

In this laboratory, a new process was created which Perrey calls "Electronic
Sono-syntheses." To produce these syntheses they use not only musical instruments
from electronic sources (Jenny Ondioline, Martenot Waves, etc.) but also sounds of
natural origin (i.e. musique concrete). These sounds were modified, transmuted,
transformed, to the point of changing their harmonic structure, making out of them
new, unprecedented original sonorities. Each sound thus created was then
pre-recorded on tape, classified, catalogued by frequency, timbre and "tendency." At
|the time of composing the "musical phrase," each sound was "isolated" and selected
according to its nature.  The sonorities were then painstakingly assembled by splicing
each bit of tape together manually with micrometric precision to form the "melodic line"
and/or the rhythmic structure of the piece chosen.

The synthetic rhythmic-melodic tape track thus created was then carefully
synchronized with music played by live musicians on both electronic and natural
instruments as well as with electronic sounds produced by oscillators, tone
generators and feedback loops. Finally, through a complicated process of intricate
overdubbing, the likes of which we believe have never before been done to this extent
on records, a multi-channel tape master was produced embodying a synthesis of all
electronic and natural elements.

A lot of patience was required, for what is heard on this record represents the
intricately condensed and selected product of 275 hours of work in the laboratory, and
the use of several miles of magnetic tape. As for the tools used in this delicate
operation, they were several tape recorders turning at exactly the same speed, an 18
channel mixer, the prerecorded tapes, splicing tape and—we hate to say this after the
preceding highly technical buildup—a plain, ordinary pair of scissors. But it must be
also admitted that the most important tool was one that has been operating in human
affairs even before the scissors, and will continue to operate when we are far out in
the space age; namely, the imagination.

 
















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