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Re: Gravikords, Whirlies, & Pyrophones
Hi Paolo...great post about the instruments! One of our friends has a
collection of waterphones and WE WANT THEM ALL!
In the same spirit, the LoOpDoctOrs, while doing ethnographic research in
northern Italy, came upon a furniture/lifestyle kinda place in Milan and
wandered in with their accompanying eight-year-old co-expeditionarys.
these tykes have sampled, looped and mangled with the Doctors live in
non-napping audiences, and are well versed in the kind of maniac and off-
kilter instrumentation it takes to win a place in the known looping
One of them insisted that a copper napkin ring with a kind of twisted
ring would be just the ticket for infusing the next willing audience with
healing sounds. We brought the napkin ring back to these domestic shores.
Frankly, we didn't look too excitedly at another triangle thingy, since we
thought Ricki Lee Jones and her record producers milked just about every
triangle sound ever created in the early seventies. But the Doctors were
wrong. This thing does a high frequency karinnnng alright, but what's very
strange is that the thickness and weight of the copper (all designed in the
service of holding a napkin, remember), also makes it twist at the end of a
suspending string. When it does this while being rapped by a hard rubber
mallet, the most incredible whirring sound comes out, sort of like
plastic tube, but as one of the Doc's comments, also like a pumping
about to jolt prodigious numbers of smoking internal vaccuum tubes.
In short it is that rare sound at once earthy and ethereal that makes one
up, perk up one's ears, and then stetch like an alert, waking dog who's
been buzzed by sweet but extreme high frequency. Even with advancing age,
Doctors appreciate the refreshing and renewing waters of creativity poured
forth from those younger with superior hearing at high frequencies and a
willingness to take napkin rings seriously as makers of music.
In short, just because you're eating with it doesn't mean you can't hear