Marinos Koutsomichalis è stato eliminato
The project consists of a series of sound performances and audio pieces, all based on the raw output of the a Serge modular synthesiser. Employing a series of non-compositional stratagems, Marinos Koutsomichalis attempted to eliminate himself so that the machine’s foundational material attributes are eventually accelerated and foregrounded.
The Serge is an analogue modular system system originally developed by Serge Tcherepnin, Rich Gold and Randy Cohen at CalArts in late 1972. Serge desired to create an inexpensive version of the Buchla modular system and went on to develop kits for students to affordably build their own synthesis systems, in this fashion initiating a Serge DIY tradition that is still relevant today (many individuals and companies still produce their own DIY Serges). The underlying Serge philosophy is very different to that of other synthesiser manufacturers of that time (and in general). Serge modules are typically bare-bones and designed to bring many aspects of the circuits out to the front panel so that they can be patched in all sorts of nonstandard and unconventional ways. Building upon this philosophy, the artist indulged into an unconditional interrogation of the instrument, aiming to entirely ‘eliminate’ himself in, via a process of unconditional exploration and employing non-compositional stratagems so that the machine’s foundational material attributes may be accelerated and foregrounded.
‘Marinos Koutsomichalis è stato eliminato’ is accomplished in several stages and, in turn, has informed and pollinated a number of different subprojects and creative outcomes. ‘Elimination’ has been attempted through 2 different exploration/recording sessions (one in 2012 and a second in 2015), several editing sessions afterwards, and several studio and live appropriations of the resulting material. Among others, two different studio albums have been released.
‘Ereignis’ LP features two tracks from ‘Marinos Koutsomichalis è stato eliminato’ and has been released by Holotype Editions (Athens GR) in 2015 (a digital stream featured below). This album has been met with great enthusiasm by international critics, with e.g. Russell Cuzner from The Quietus suggesting it sounds “like conceptual art created by machines to taunt us with our own mortality”, and Kasper T. Toeplitz from (francophone) Présent Continu / Revue et Corigeé saying “un disque de «noise» avec une attention au détail accrue, avec cette impression de pouvoir observer les vies minuscules du son en train de se faire. A cet égard, on est bien plus dans le noise « classique » celui qui préférait un discours monophonique à un amoncellement de voies, à une polyphonie des timbres ; un discours unique, une ligne, mais d’une grande complexité qui ne paraît jamais plus agitée que, paradoxalement, dans ses moments les plus statiques”
‘Interrogations for Solo Serge’ is another album that belongs to this broader project. It is available for download/stream through Internet Archive and Bandcamp. All tracks are monophonic this time – yet sometimes they are performed by both speakers, some others by one only, with the intention to allow listeners to position their loudspeakers any arbitrary fashions and to also experiment with unusual configurations. (Headphone listening is, of course, altogether discouraged). The last track (bonus track) should be reproduced by a solo subwoofer.