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MACHINE SOUND cd MATT HECKERT on Catasonic Records

Can you run real "machines" from a personal computer instead of wimpy drum machines and samplers? Big stuff that goes fast or could get out of control and hurt you? And, could these machines be controlled enough to produce repeatable rhythms and such? Yes, and that's exactly what Matt Heckert is doing. After producing soundtracks and machines with the legendary Survival Research Laboratories for 8 years, Matt parted company with them in 1988 to pursue the enterprise of machine generated sound and since then has staged performances in San Francisco, Berkeley, Seattle, Cleveland, New York City, Munich, The Hague, Den Bosch, Innsbruck, Krems/Stein, with more to come.

This CD is a compilation of live recordings from performances of the Mechanical Sound Orchestra in the US and Europe. The insert includes some photos of the machines and technical information. Here's what a reviewer had to say after attending a performance of the Mechanical Sound Orchestra in Seattle: "...Eyes closed, moist spine pressed against the vibrating wall, my jiggling organs resonated to the superb, focused din. Giant gyroscopes rolling on steel plates conjured images of large locomotives rumbling by. Involuntary solar-plexus spasms sympathized with motor-driven, piston-sucking, rubber-membrane drums, while ears throbbed with percussive over stimulation. Inside this tactile sound, Milwaukee Road memories blew by, inches from my nose." _________________________________________________________________

These images are some of the many photos included in the CD Booklet. _________________________________________________________________

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Location: San Francisco Artspace. These are the "Oscillating Rings," 38 inch diameter steel rings which rotate at varying speeds on a large steel table. Photo: Sixth Street Studios _________________________________________________________________

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Location: Kunstpassage, The Hague, Holland. In the foreground is the "Big Boxer" a motor driven dome weighing about 240 lbs. Two vertical poles just behind it are the "Disc Cymbals." The horizontal cable with the aluminum disc is the "Disc Cable Machine." Photo: Matt Heckert. _________________________________________________________________

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Location: University Art Museum/Pacific Film Archives, Berkeley, California. The instruments in the Mechanical Sound Orchestra are mostly run by permanent magnet servo motors, some solenoids and some pneumatics. Control is almost achieved by running MIDI out of a Macintosh computer through some custom D/A convertors, then to the various instruments. Photo: Ben Blackwell _________________________________________________________________

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Location: Kunstpassage, The Hague, Holland. Overhead shot of installation in this former government printing facility. Photo: Matt Heckert. _________________________________________________________________

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Location: Kunstpassage, The Hague, Holland. Shown here are two "Resonators" which are steel tubes 24" x 60" with gum rubber heads. One end is passive, the other is motor driven. Photo: Matt Heckert. _________________________________________________________________

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This photo is of the "Rotary Violin" a set of twelve piano strings on two revolving hoops. The strings are scraped or plucked as they move. Photo: Arthur Aubry.

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This photo is a link which downloads a 3 meg QuickTime Movie of one of Matt's performances.

The movie is courtesy of We Never Sleep, PO Box 92, Denver Colorado, 80201, who sell this video of Matt's performance in San Francisco and the compilation: Insomnia Vol. 2, featuring music created by Matt for some of the SRL performances in 1983-87 _________________________________________________________________

Contact Catasonic Records at:

PO Box 2727, 1615 North Wilcox, Hollywood CA 90078 / Voice: 213.664.1404 / Fax: 213.664.1228 / email at: catasonic@interramp.com.


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