sonic research - investigation of musical coherences of
The basic intention of URBAN AUDIO is the examination of the musical context of public space, and in particular of road
traffic. Already John Cage realized that the self-organizing system of traffic contains an enormous compositional
potential. ("When you listen to Beethoven or Mozart, you see, that it is always the same, but when you listen to
traffic, you see that it is always different.")
The ending of a symphony
Today the western world has reached its peak in the infrastructural developement of individual road traffic. After the
Crescendo in the last decades of the 20th century the ecological change will cause a Diminuendo of this phenomenon,
which will be accompanied by the ebbing of the compositional potential. By the rising oil-price and petroleum taxes the
fuel-burning engines will loose their meaning in the inner-city traffic and will slowly be replaced by more silent
hybrid and electric engines. These will form the audio environment of our future cities. The auditory potential of
phenomena like the tenuto (sustain) of a holdup or the staccato of stop-and-go traffic will be bygone.
A Finale Furioso like in classical compositions will not occur. More likely there will be a Smorzando (expiration) to
the equality of the rhythm of public transport.
The Symphony of Individual Transport whose Overture had been played with the first Otto-engine, and whose Finale will
be played with electric engines, has now reached its Foritssimo.
The AmericanSoundsTour takes place from August to October 2008. During this time URBAN AUDIO collects musical samples of
the sound of American metropolises all over the country. The instrument for this research is AudioUnit 9, a device,
which transfers any surrounding noise to a A-major triad.