Richard's studio. Photo: David Mattingly

The Course of the River

RICHARD: The pieces on "The Course of the River" were both recorded in the State University of New York at Albany's Electronic Music Studio. The CEMS (Coordinated Electronic Music Studio) System contained an extended array of sound generating and processing modules as well as a unique programming system consisting of an automated matrix mixer, a digital master clock, and a bank of eight analog sequencers with customized logic hardware for running them together, independently, in succession, or in any combination of those modes.

"A River On Cold Mountain" and "The Course of the River" were both recorded by multi-tracking multiple passes of the CEMS output to 4-track Scully tape decks, which I then mixed down to stereo. "A River On Cold Mountain" was created entirely from single sine waves frequency-modulated by groups of other sine waves, all under the control of the CEMS sequencers. Although it may sound like it, there are no filter or noise generators used in this recording.

The title track is a darkly pulsating Morton Subotnick-influenced soundscape, brooding and non-human. With /Iron Hill/ Lainhart found his own voice. It was the first realization of his One Sound concept, which delivers what it says, a 12-minute organ-like blast, massive but teeming with inner life. /Snow/ is a very different One Sound composition, brittle and closely focused, situated ambivalently between shortwave sferics and crackling ice. — Julian Cowley, The Wire 317


Discography:  These Last DaysTen Thousand Shades of BlueI, Mute Hummings (compilation)White NightLuxLuminous AccidentsCranes Fly WestThe Wave Sounding Sea/The Course of the RiverPolychromatic IntegersAn Abandoned GardenNEW! – Modulisme Session 101

Recommended: Listen on headphones
or external speakers.

The Course of the River (1973/2009, released to Bandcamp 2012)

A River on a Cold Mountain 14:21
The Course of the River 31:48

Performed and recorded in real time without overdubs.

Album available from Vicmod (002)