Daphne Oram – Electronic Sound Patterns

Listen, Move and Dance No 3 7″, His Master’s Voice, 1962 (also compiled on Listen, Move and Dance Nos 1-3, lp, EMI, 1962)

Clinging fervently to the hand of the Radiophonic Workshop collection, here’s something comparable from the echoing, dimly-remembered world of British education in the late 1960s: music and movement. Namely, the teacher would spin these sounds on the wheels of steel, and all the six year-olds in their singlets and shorts would spin round and round on the polished parquet flooring of the assembly hall, pretending to be the concept of winter, a tree in a thunderstorm, or a lemming in a blender, until it was time for mid-morning milk and accompanying weak vomiting. And people wonder where the Aphex Twin got his inspiration…

From the sleevenotes: “Teachers seeking original material have found this new approach exciting and stimulating in their creative work for music, movement and drama. The Sound patterns are intended for children to enjoy and may lead them into movement of dance-like character, or involve them in imaginative situations. People who are interested in sound production may like to know that these sound patterns were created by Daphne Oram at her Electronic Studio in Kent. By using audio generators, many tape recorders, filters, ring modulators and other electronic devices she built up the tone colours, pitched each of the notes separately, gave them duration and dynamics and finally spliced the notes together to obtain the required rhythms and sequences.”

There have been a couple of great collections of Oram’s work in the radiophonics world released in recent years. Judging by the cover of that she looked more like a woman who write to the BBC about falling moral standards than a fearless sonic pioneer in musical outer space. This one has, as far as we know, not been officially reissued in any form. BTW, side two is ripped as one track.

A1. Melodic Group Shapes 1 (1:20)
A2. Melodic Group Shapes 2 (0:37)
A3. Three Single Sounds Taken in Canon (1:52)
A4. Rhythmic Variation 1 (0:52)
A5. Rhythmic Variation 2 (0:41)
B1. Ascending And Descending Sequences 1 (0:36)
B2. Ascending And Descending Sequences 2 (0:33)
B3. Ascending And Descending Sequences 3 (1:54)
B4. Ascending And Descending Sequences 4 (0:45)
B5. Ascending And Descending Sequences 5 (0:46)
B6. Ascending And Descending Sequences 6 (0:30)

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2 thoughts on “Daphne Oram – Electronic Sound Patterns

  1. Bungo says:

    rare as hens teeth,this stuff.thank you.

  2. oiche says:

    Thank you thank you!!

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