Two thoughts on creative commons experimental electronic music in 2011.
A. The quantity resulting quality.
This year, I listened, intently, 311 releases. They are not far from all who have posted, since I only hear that, after a superficial examination, I decided to download because I seem interesting to me, from my personal taste. To this we must add all those who have not come to my reader, twitter, etc.. Let us, therefore, that within the tag? Creative Commons Experimental electronic? 600 releases have been published: many, too? Definitely not.
In the world of commercial music, there are three filters until the disc comes to fit into our hi-fi:
1. The first is the filter of the artist: it commonly develops a technical and aesthetic approach that culminates in the finished work. On the other hand, if the artist is professional, he must ensure the salary. So we have to adapt his method, in addition to the aesthetic and technical requirements, to the audience being addressed and other criteria like commercial, technical, etc..
2. The second is the filter of the recording company: They have made an investment and want to recover the money. Furthermore, in most cases, they also make the technical, so I must return to artist accommodate your method twice: the criterion of the label and technology available in the company.
3. The final filter is a personal filter: which will mutate over the time and the music heard and is modulated by personality. This criterion is the target of a commercial artist and label. It is the gateway to the money. It is strongly influenced by the processes of acculturation and marketing efforts to define the culture of a particular form suited to their interests.
If we agree that experimental music should demand the highest standards of freedom: What positive things provide free licenses and Internet distribution to the group of experimental music makers?
1. Eliminate the economic consequences of the label filter, as netlabels earn no money and its catalog is based on other criteria (aesthetics, consistency in the collection, etc.).
2. If the artist does not publish on netlabels, if self-publishing, the label filter is completely eliminated.
3. If the artist is not professional, and do not try (remember that many artists released with CC licenses to get concerts, charging, or to become known to later sell records -which I think is also a good use of the license-) eliminates also the distortion it causes in their method created for a specific audience that is, is what you might want your music.
4. Technically there are two interesting questions: the first is that the internet ensures higher availability than physical stores (that we should be grateful, especially to servers or sonicsquirrel as archive.org, and without their existence would be much more complicated) and also if the release is free the listener does not need to think whether or worth spending the money on that. The second is that if the author chooses to complete the cycle and use the computer with free software to their creations out of the equation all technical barriers imposed by the cost of instruments, microphones… The author used to create the same tool to distribute and communicate.
In short, experimental music tries to answer the question: How would sound if I did this, and that …? At this question must be added “buts” of the author something like: How would sound if I did this, and that …? But I have this technical restriction, but I have this aesthetic restriction,.. It seems clear that if we add more “buts “, at the end we can not call it experimental music.
600 releases not are many. Now, as artists, we should not think about money or the public, we may publish everything that passes our filter, which is undoubtedly more than a record label would like. Now, as listeners, we must be more accountable, and we can not say: “I do not know how it published this, is a waste of money”. If we lose time or a few megabytes in your disk in a release we do not like is because our approach is not sufficiently refined. Freedom and quantity causes evolution, dynamism, self-criticism and collaboration, which eventually leads, sooner or later, a handful of extraordinary works like have been published this year.
B. I need your feedback, even negative.
Despite all the above on individual freedom as creators, the truth is that one hopes to talk, even argue about their creations. But do we, experimental musicians, appropriate channels for discussion of issues around which revolves our music? And, in addition to channels, feedback culture have developed enough to take advantage we have?
Regarding the first question, it is widely used social networks as channels for communication and review: twitter, emails, web blogs, Google +, Facebook, etc. In addition, there are audio only initiatives, such as SoundCloud, and more specific as Modisti. Nevertheless, it seems that everything is very scattered and fragmented, are we so few as not to run an exclusive forum for cc experimental electronic music, or is that neither the creators nor the listeners are willing to openly discuss this ?
Which brings me to the second question: Why when someone listening to a disc and form an opinion, favorable or unfavorable, not the author writes a few lines to inform? (With respect, of course, without falling into being a troll) Why do not argue with us about philosophical, aesthetic, technical or whatever we do in music? Beyond the notable exceptions (for example, C. Reider), it seems that no culture or interest for this.
I leave these questions in the air, but I reaffirm the view that communication is necessary because extensive reflection on our art and gives us different views can be useful.