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Themesicon: navigation pathOverview of Media Articon: navigation pathAudio
Berlin Mix (Marclay, Christian), 1993Imaginary Landscape No. 1 (Cage, John), 1939Williams Mix (Cage, John), 1952

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anthem played on a feedback electric guitar. The significance of sound reaches a new level with the audio electroquote techniques in DJ mixes, and then again with the dissemination of digital sampling in the 1990s. Now not only a song is quoted, but the sound itself. When John Oswald recomposes Beethoven and Michael Jackson using the same means, then what primarily counts is the processing technique—melody, harmony, formal structure or lyrics only prompt a sound realization.[20] The sound is the music.

In 1993, Christian Marclay, who as an artist and art DJ thematized the history of the sound carrier, assembled a collage of music from a variety of stylistic and geographic origins in his «Berlin Mix.» What was unusual about it was that he did not use any technical media, rather he assembled the original sound sources in an auditorium and conducted them using cardboard signs. The physical presence of more than 180 musicians made the usual eclectic dealing with samples seem absurd. Marclay's action showed that music can be more than just sound and how much we have become accustomed to getting by with just a fraction of the substance from the media we receive.[21]


Principles of chance

With his composition «Imaginary Landscape No. 1,» in 1939 John Cage applied techniques similar to those of Pierre Schaeffer, however he used test records with sine tones, thus keeping to the ‹musical tone.› With the publication of his manifesto-like text «The Future of Music: Credo» in 1937, he had already predicted that the use of noises and the complete control of the overtone structure of all sounds with the aid of audio technologies would shape the music of the future.[22] In 1952 Cage started from the assumption that every sound and every noise is musical unto itself, and he manifested this in his first tape composition «Williams Mix.» For him, the advantage of tape technology was that one could penetrate into the micro-time of the sound and create a high degree of complexity. «What was so fascinating about tape possibility was that a second, which we had always thought was a relatively short space of time, became fifteen inches.»[23] In a nearly 500- page score drawn up according to principles of chance, the way the tape has to be cut is presented graphically, much like a cutting pattern. The score specifies in which form, for how long and which

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