Jonathan Borofsky & Ed Tomney – The Radical Songbirds of Islam

Tape, ROIR, 1987

Here’s a pair of New York artists. Borofsky is a sculptor and on this recording a sound poet (see also a track on Tellus #21), and that’s his voice you hear. Tomney is an electronics guy (who also composes soundtracks and once played with Arthur Russell in Dinosaur L), and that’s his processing you hear, looping vocal sounds into clouds of tone. A bit ahead of its time, but also a bit “wow, you guys spent months making this… when a couple of years later you could knock this sort of stuff out on a $29 kids’ sampling keyboard.” Just goes to show, though, ROIR wasn’t all dub worship and local noisecore.

A. Opus For Voice – Movements 1, 2
B. Opus For Voice – Movements 2, 3

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2 thoughts on “Jonathan Borofsky & Ed Tomney – The Radical Songbirds of Islam

  1. aboombong says:

    I remember doing the tape-splicing and other labor intensive processes to get sounds that are now canned in freeware. Even remember how exciting it was to get a digital delay that allowed for TWO SECOND SAMPLES!!!…two whole seconds. It was rack mounted and cost like 500 bucks.

  2. continuo says:

    Strange yet beautiful music. Thanks.

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