BANDWIDTH AutoCad Interview / Penultimatum Review
A Popular Culture Electronic Magazine
Click here for a printable version of this article
The AutoCad Interview
Listen to AutoCad at MP3.com
AutoCad generally creates danceable Fractal Ambiance. The group is
signed to Pivotal Records
of North Carolina and has composed over two
hundred songs, mostly electronica, based on natural or mathematical
AutoCad has been kind enough to grant BANDWIDTH an interview
explaining about his love of "data music" and the hundreds
of works he has
BANDWIDTH: How and when did you become interested in this type of music?
I was using some early fractal/logarithmic music generation
programs (like Qmuse) and ran across the fact that trees grow
logarithmically. I looked at a tree and said, "Why not use its properties to
write a song"?
you give an example of a calculation you have used to create
: The ratio of the altitude
of a pyramid to the cross-section or base. You
could use (the equation) a2+b2-c2, where a is the position of the note
the song, b is a constant, and c is the note you use (1=a, for example, and
2=b and so on...).
Does one have to possess high math skills to create this type of
AUTOCAD: No. Just buy a book of tables
or use your calculator. You can use a
logarithm table, or squares, sines, cosines, and other functions. This
type would be called "mathematic".
BANDWIDTH: What type of equipment does one need to create this type of
AUTOCAD: Any instruments can be used, but I use a PC Studio and Sonic
Foundry Software (see the end of this article
for information on music
BANDWIDTH: How many songs have you composed?
AUTOCAD: Over 200.
BANDWIDTH: Have you ever composed music for anyone? What was the medium? How
many compositions have you done for
AUTOCAD: Yes. For Dan Harman of Cblue Radio (a closing theme for his show),
Powahouse Productions (soundtrack
material), and dozens of artists for
remixing projects. These works were done for other people, or given to them,
I have made little to no money off of the music.
BANDWIDTH: What projects are you currently working on?
A remix project with Frankenstyne . Plus various other remixing
projects. I am also releasing an album called "Logarithm:
The Beat of Life"
through Pivotal early this year. For a release notification sign up at
BANDWIDTH: Where can your music be heard?
AUTOCAD: Mostly online at MP3.com (several D.A.M. CDs at $5.99 each)
hub, but various other hosting sites, radio programs, play AutoCad.
I host a popular radio show (touted
by Spin Magazine-November 2000) called
Our Skies Radio. Or e-mail me at email@example.com for a demo CD or
I will try to oblige.
BANDWIDTH: Thank you very much for taking time out for this interview. Is
you would like to say any aspiring "data music composers"?
AUTOCAD: I hope other artists and artist wannabes jump
in the pool of using
data to generate music. I think amateurs can now become experts. Don't be
afraid to give it a
try. Try searching online for free fractal/logarithmic
music generators like Whalley's "Tangent" and Algo-Arts' "Soft
Step" and get
Comments and questions about this article can be sent to
Very BRIEF and SIMPLE Explanation of Fractals
The AutoCad Interview
Review of AutoCad's CD Penultimatum
Info on Fractals and Music Generating Programs
Back to BANDWIDTH's Main Page
Jennifer J. of Bandwidth:
A Popular Culture Electronic Magazine
Click here for a printable version of
Listen to AutoCad at MP3.com
It may not be magic, but
it is pure genius! The music on Penultimatum
was created using natural and mathematical data. The eight tracks on the
Penultimatum were created by using data from sea turtles, biosequence,
atmospheric, solar, and logarithms. Through
the use of this data and a
music-generating program AutoCad was able to create a body relaxing
that flows with elegance and that will have you
tapping your foot away.
The music on the Penultimatum is almost
psychedelic. You are literally
on a dance trip where there are no boundaries to how the body can move. When
to the dance tracks Delta Atmos, Our Skies, and Stars 124 which
are based on atmospheric data, one feels like you are
nearly flying around
and around. The sound is harsh and seems chaotic as electronic beats seem
like they are shooting
at you like in a video game. But in the sound there
is sense of togetherness that flows throughout all the songs that
you want to bounce your head and put together an interpretive dance group
just so you can make your dance
trip a reality.
AutoCad may be partial to composing dance music like Delta Atmos, but
has a true talent for slow
relaxing music that rivals some of the most
beautiful classical music pieces. Log Rhythm which is based on mathematical
data, to be more specific the logarithm function, is a slow eerie song. It
is almost like one has just left their
body and are heading toward the
light. It sounds like several violins are playing with a comb. It is so
definitely a meditating song.
Amphibia is my favorite song, it is another slow and eerie song based
on data collected
from Sea Turtle behaviors. Again there is a violin sound
that seems to be vibrating, almost as though from another dimension.
Listening to this song I actually started to imagine ballet dancers prancing
around the stage. Now either this music
is so free flowing that it allows
the mind to relax and wander or I am just insane (both can be argued to a
AutoCad's music in general is great, but as far as general radio play
here in the States well we know how that
goes. I have three suggestions for
AutoCad and one for those reading this article. First the one for readers of
article, you need to hear this music to believe it. Check out AutoCad
and the music of Penultimatum at MP3.com, believe
me you will not be sorry.
And my suggestions for AutoCad is to get your music played abroad.
more open-minded when it comes to music and I can see your
music going far in certain parts of Europe and Japan.
have you ever considered getting onto a science fiction anime
soundtrack? The music on Penultimatum would really enhance
mecha-fighting scene. And third I also suggest you try to get his music in a
video game. Like the mecha
anime suggestion, this will expose many to your
sound and peak their interests in data music. Also video game sound tracks
do really good outside of the States and would actually get into the hands
of people who would really appreciate this
type of music.
Comments and or questions about this article can be sent to
Chris Phinney is an electronic musician and veteran of the underground music scene heavily involved since the early years
of the "cassette scene" with his label, Harsh Reality.
He shares some of his views with Don Campau.
Question: When did your fascination with electronic music begin?
In the late seventies was listening to Kraftwerk,Lucifer,Hawkwind,Amon
Heldon,Tangerine Dream & tons more.
How do you manage family life with a brisk musical
It can be tough,though I try to not let it be,thats one of the reasons I went to DSL,a lot
time spent behind the machine...with my software based music which is what I have
been doing a lot of lately.Lots of fun
& much different,Studio works are so cool,
& my family actually prefers that instead of the machine..Not near
as much music produced
here as used to be.Gotta divide the time up between music,family & work & the
chores one has to get done.
What does your wife and kids think of your music?
They are all very supportive
of the music,studio & software style,I think my kids prefer
the rave type stuff at least my soon to be 14 year old
Molly does.The boys like the studio
work,because at times they record with me Grahm & Eli,now the youngest Bela well
she will dance to anything!!
At your day job do they know of your music interests and how do they relate
you because of it?
Well being that I am a self employed House Painter,I have different interactions from all over,I
am never in one place longer than a month which is the beauty of the job.The boredom of the same place
in but the boredom of the job can,as with any job,but that changes up too
so it kinda stays fresh.Some of my customers
are interested,some could care less & some
have no idea.Depends on how I percieve the person to maybe be react etc.I
did at one time
several years ago traded a few Grindstone records for a few Steamboat Strummers records
that my customers
30 years older than myself were doing..
Tell us about your current projects...
Well they will all take some
time,no rush on any of them,a studio & a software based
Mental Anguish CDs are in the works as well as collaborative
CDS with Autocad,
Doug Michael,new Phinney/McGee,nu Angwana,some reissues of older stuff.of course always involved
the Internet Music Collective Tapegerm,a new group of artists I am working with in which we
do Compilation CDs,Remix each
others music & the like,Electropods keeps me very busy as well.
Also nu Planet 0 & Swine is Mental releases to
be done soon,& more Planet 0 & Mental Anguish &
Nomuzic later this year hopefully.Plans are also just have
to find the time to collaborate with
Zan Hoffman & Ken Clinger.Whew!!!Thats about it.Damn almost forgot working
a collaboration CD with Bryan Baker(Gajoob,Homemade Music,Blind Mime Ensemble)
Anguished Blind Mimes Mental Ensemble..Here
are the urls of some of the projects for those
that are into the mp3 thing!!!
CDS are here below:
My radio stations:
Has the home taper movement evolved the
way you thought it would?
I suppose it has although people do not seem to want to listen to cassette tapes as much,
then we all got into vinyl as it got cheaper,now its CDRS & CDS,a natural evolving process I think
as CDs &
CDRs are cheap or cheaper to do than cassettes or about the same & thats what
people want these days,some great hometapers
have vanished,some vanished & came back,
& some never went away.To answer your question.YES!!!
internet/MP3/file sharing trend the natural extension of the mail
music collaboration? What do you see as the inherit
differ from a mail collab?
Yes,I think it is the natural extension,easier & cheaper to
do provided one embraces & uses the
technology.I like both mail & internet,but tend to produce the internet ones
only size wise in length as to your pieces & all having enough memory or storage space,they
different in that I find them very easy to do,cheaper to do.etc.mp3s to me are the way music is
going I think
on the whole,hometapers & musicians should really embrace the technology not stay stuck
in the old school way of doing
things.Nothing wrong with old school,I do that all the
time but the new technology is there so use it to its full extent.It
will help you
out tremendously.Otherwise you may just get left behind,of course I know artists who really do
one way or another.Me I embrace it & use it!!
Tell us how to contact you...
Via snail mail at Harsh
Reality Music/P.O.Box 241661/Memphis,TN.38124-1661/U.S.A.
or email- firstname.lastname@example.org
Any final thoughts?
Wow,thanks for asking me to do this interview Don,its been a blast..
Hometapers all over embrace the new technology,overcome
Dive right in..."Seed the Internet with your music" Its free,no postage due!!
Artemiy Artemiev is an electronic music composer from Moscow.I spoke with him via the mail recently and he had some interesting
things to say.Get in touch with him if you enjoy excellent and atmospheric electronic music.
Your father, Edward Artemiev, is a famous electronic musician & soundtrack composer. As a child, do you remember music
always being played? What are your memories (if any)? What influence has his music been on yours? Does he give you tips or
suggestions about composing?
Of course when You live in the family of musicians (my mother is a professional
pianist) You could hear music in the house all day long & sooner or later You begin not only playing music but also composing
it. I consider my father to be my first teacher of electronic & film music and of course his music influenced on my activity.
He is considered to be a pioneer of electronic music in this country. He began composing electronic music in early 60s on
the first Russian synthesiser «ANS». «ANS» is an instrument with which a composer can not only create but even draw his music
without notes & orchestra. A Russian scientist Evgeni Murzin spent about 20 years (1937-1957) to create this apparatus
which can join together three processes: music creation, recording and performing. All these processes are rather complicated.
You can see twinkling of different lamps, rotation of figured discs made of glass. Notes are cut on glass disc covered with
special layer. The drawings on the glass are «sounding notes». To listen to the drawn picture you should press the button
and a wonderful transformation will begin. The engraving will transfer into music. The «ANS» octave consists of 72 elements
the whole treasure of sounds. E. Murzin dedicated his apparatus to the well-known Russian composer Aleksander Nikolaevitch
Scriabin, thats why he called it «ANS». A. N. Scriabin, the creator of the «Poem Of Ecstasy», used in his works a highly
chromatic new type of harmonic style designed to express his beliefs, views & wishes. «ANS» was used by my father for
creating soundtracks for such films as «Mirror» & «Solyaris» (A. Tarkovskiy), «Siberiade» (A. Kontchalovskiy). This instrument
was located in the Moscow Experimental Studio of Electronic Music (1968-1980) & since 1972 I spent a lot of time in this
studio. There I listened to the music of such groups & composers as «King Crimson», «Genesis», «Yes», Klaus Schulze, «Tangerine
Dream», played on «ANS», «Synthi-100», attended rehearsals of my fathers group «Boomerang». I saw how my father worked with
instruments, people & I tried to understand the process of creating electronic music. For me it was magic. And my father
was a magician - surrounded by various apparatuses, synthesisers, lamps, etc. who was making all these machines to sound.
He never gave me any tips or suggestions how to compose music if I dont show him my compositions & wont ask for an advice
myself. Only then hell tell me how (to his opinion) my composition should sound. He said that its the authors business how
to compose music & if somebody interfere in the process with the advise then inspiration will fly away. You could ask
for an advise only after You completed Your work.
What was it like in pre-democratic Russia for electronic
musicians? My sense is that it was discouraged & recordings not generally available. Did everything changed after 1990
From one hand it was it was very difficult for the artists in pre-democratic Russia - censorship,
KGB, police, jail, no freedom at all but from the other hand only then artist could create real masterships as there were
no commercials, dull TV-programs, etc. People wrote interesting serious books, shot interesting films, played & composed
interesting music. Now You have freedom but no interesting books, films, music. I mean of course there are some but not as
many as it was in the period from 1970 till 1985. Now situation with the music in the world is extremely dangerous. As for
the modern popular music that comes out from every discotec & night-club then I can say that I only dont want it to be
aggressive, de-constructive & so faceless as its now. I also want to say some words about music scene in Russia &
the Western countries. Now theres no difference between music scenes in Russia & the Western countries. Heres popular
what is popular on the West - trance, hip-hop, rave, rap - in other words dancing styles of music. And mass-medias promote
only such kind of music. It seems that the world went crazy. As for serious modern music then I must say that situation with
electronic, electroacoustic, contemporary, experimental & avant-garde music is very specific. People are interested in
the above-mentioned genres of music. I can say so because of their positive reaction on my monthly lectures, radio & TV
program on Moscow cable television (both programs are very episodic yet. Its because of I show non-commercial serious music).
But they complain that its practically impossible to get music of this kind in this country. Really, its very difficult to
find CDs of Alejandro Vinao or Francis Dhomont, or Pierre Schaeffer for example. Right now «Electroshock» is working on the
question of opening a special CD store where well be distributing, selling & promote only electronic, electroacoustic,
experimental & avant-garde music. If everything is OK then well open this particular CD somewhere at the end of autumn01.
As for various events devoted to the above-mentioned non-commercial genres of music in Moscow then I can say that once in
three months Russian Association for Electroacoustic music runs concerts of serious electronic, electroacoustic, experimental
& avant-garde (EEE&A) music. Also we have «ALTERNATIVA» festival devoted to EEE&A music & besides that many
interesting composers & musicians often visit Moscow with their concerts & performances. And You know many people
(by the way many young ones) attend these events. Theyre sick & tired of techno, pop, rap, hip-hop & other pieces
of commercial shit. Really I met those people in Russia, Sweden, Finland, USA, France, Great Britain & spoke with them.
Theyre very interested in listening & buying electroacoustic, electronic, experimental & avant-garde music. Now the
cultural situation in the world is very sad (our countries are not the exception). Nobody wants to read serious books, watch
serious films, to listen to serious music. The motto of young generation is «switch on rap & Ill cry». Yes! They call
rap or techno «the highest level of art» & we can see tears of joy on their faces while they listen to 120 beat per minute.
When we ask them who is Michaelangelo or Leonardo Da Vinci - they say «Oh! I know! These are the names of the famous turtles,
mutant heroes». My God! It scares! And Youre speaking about the development. Development of what? Degradation? I think so.
What is going on with our poor planet, You know? I dont know.
Your CDs are beautifully made & of the
highest quality. Is it possible to easily get this type of quality in Your country?
Thank You very much for
Your compliment. Unfortunately now its impossible to easily get perfect quality in this country. So we manufacture all our
production in Sweden & many people think & say that Electroshock Records is a Sweden label. I dont know how to react
on this words. Im Russian but all my CD-business in Sweden. So I dont know now. Maybe its Russian label, maybe its Swedish
label or joint-venture - it doesnt matter. But I hope that sooner or later Russia will manage to produce CDs of perfect quality.
Tel us about some of your favorite influences, music or otherwise
As for the music that
I like then I can say thatI like classic, contemporary & electroacoustic music, especially electroacoustic. I think that
this particular genre of music is more interesting (personally for me) because it combines classical form & leaves more
space for experimenting with sound, samplers, acoustic instruments, noises & computers. «Through the noise comes the sound
& through the sound comes the music» - these are not my words, these words belong to one of the greatest composers of
concrete music - PIERRE SCHAEFFER who began his experiments with sound in 1948. These are the composers who influenced on
my music & whom I continue to listen to - Edward Artemiev, Gyorgy Ligety, Edgar Varese, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Milton
Babbit, Brian Eno, Pierre Bouleze, Francis Dhomond, Ennio Marricone, John Williams, John Cage, Jerry Goldsmith, Pierre Henry,
Alejandro Vinao, Earle Brown, Herbert Eimert, York Holler, Takehisa Kosugi, Steve Reigh, Henri Pousseur, Klaus Schulze, Pierre
Schaeffer, Graham Bowers, Steve Roach, Luigi Nono, Harold Budd, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Gordon Mumma, Vangelis, also I like
such groups as «King Crimson», «UK», «The Who», «Yes», «Genesis», «Pink Floyd», «Rolling Stones», jazz-composers & musicians
- Bob James, Terje Rypdail, Herbie Hancock, Chick Korea, Jaco Pastorius, classical composers - Gustav Mahler, Richard Wagner,
P. I. Tchaykovskiy, Igor Stravinskiy, Antonio Vivaldi, Edward Grieg. As for the inspiration then I can say that my inspiration
comes from films of Bernardo Bertolucci, Federico Fellini, Lucino Visconti, Volker Schlondorff, Piere Paolo Pazolini, Nikita
Michkalkov, Andrei Tarkovskiy, Reiner Werner Fassbinder, Vittorio De Sica, Marco Ferreri, Ettore Scola, Eric Rohmer, pictures
of Bruegel, Bosch, Gogen, Dali, poems of A. Pushkin & M. Lermontov, novels of F. Dostoevskiy, A. Chekhov, W. Shakespeare,
S. Zweig, V. Scott, V. Gugo & G. Flober.
Tell us about some of your recent projects & some of the
things you are working on
Well, several days ago I received our five new releases from Sweden: Stanislav
Kreitchi: ANSiana - 2000 (ELCD 016), Artemiy Artemiev: Forgotten Themes - 2000 (ELCD 017), Edward Artemiev: A Book of Impressions
- 2000 (ELCD 018), Anatoly Pereselegin: Download the God - 2000 (ELCD 019) & Electroshock Presents: Electroacoustic
Music. Vol. VI - 2000 (ELCD 020). Now Im working on collaborative CDs with Peter Frohmader (second one), Phillip B. Klingler
(second one) & Christopher De Laurenti (first one). Hope to publish them on Electroshock Records in autumn01. Also working
on my seventh solo CD-project & collaborative work with American artist Laurence Gartel.
give us Your current contact info & the best way to obtain Your music.
In the USA & Canada people
can order our CDs through our American distributor Archie Patterson, Eurock Distribution, P. O. Box 13718, Portland, OR 97213,
USA. Tel/Fax: (503) 281-0247. Or through our Internet distributor Gamma-shop. Its address: www.Gamma-shop.com
Question: Why Orange Entropy?
we love to
eat entropy, and the idea of oranges imploding around the universe
is sooo grand!!!
Question: Humor and earthiness
seem to be a trademark for your label.Who
influenced you and what cracks you up?
- ironically i listen to a lot
classical music(stravinsky, ravel, debussy)..and some early 70's folk and
late 60's space jazz-- steven wright
makes me laugh, most of my artists do
too...i think its a good thing..
Question: New Jersey seems to rank second
only to Ohio as a place for weirdo
musicians.Any idea why?
- im not sure why, but i am venturing into ohio;
Squidfish and Tommy Jay are 2 of my newest signees, both from ohio
area....but a lot of the music comes from all over...willy
kanu in LA, godboy
in boston...i wonder what underground alaskan music sounds like, do you know?
Don: I have only
received commercial singer/songwriter type of things.Maybe its too cold in the garage to have any fun.
anyone release a CD on your label or is it limited by a
philosophy or just bribes to the owners?
- first off,
i have to like the
cd...thats about my only criteria...to me, the label is such small potatos,
that i still dont understand
why anyone wants me to "release"
anything!....but i will if i like it!
Question: Tell us what is new, how to contact
you and anything else you'd
like to yap about.
- hmm...whats new...well im planning a move for me
and orange entropy records to the Burbank/Pasadena area...i'll
keep you updated of course on that, but it could be happening
soon(before new years in fact maybe!)...nudge squidfish, tommy jay, willy
kanu, jason sprague, vegetable pakoras
- theyre relatively new
signings....new duf davis is coming out in a few weeks, as is the entire back
Godboy material...7 albums i think...best way to reach me is at
the website www.orangeentropy.com or email, email@example.com
firstname.lastname@example.org atleast until this move is solidified....
Thanks Steve, keep up the good work.
thanks don, and the same for you...maybe when i get out to california, i'll
make a drive up there and we can record
some music together... >>
I will look forward to it.Jerseys loss will be our gain.
What about sending me an interview with your favorite musician or arty type? Or maybe your Mother-In-Law.
You can do it!
go ahead, you review it!