Exposé Online banner

David Tudor — Microphone
(Cramps Records CRSCD116, 1973/1995, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1997-02-01

Microphone Cover art

In 1973 longtime John Cage associate David Tudor recorded the two pieces on this album, which could best be described as ambient sonic experimentation. Low register audio outbursts of varying tone and duration groan and growl and mix with one another, separated by varying stretches of pure silence. One might presume that many of these short 'events' are taped samples of industrial sounds, the filtered and processed output of audio generators, or just plain feedback. The elemental parts are combined via tape splicing and/or mixing board into the two lengthy pieces (which seem only to be slightly different workings of the same basic set of sounds). Music? No. Interesting? That depends. To listen closely (that is to say, loud and with a good headset), one will hear all of the very minor sonic variations and nuances therewithin. To listen casually, as a background of sound effects, it might be relaxing (as it is for this writer) or totally un-nerving. A valid gripe is that the material here could have benefited greatly from a more succinct presentation; what takes well over an hour could have easily been accomplished in around fifteen minutes.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 11, 1995 releases, 1973 recordings

Related artist(s): David Tudor

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Claudia Quintet - For – For their fourth release, John Hollenbeck and company have produced yet another engaging disc of Euro-folk chamber jazz, for lack of a better quick descriptive for their unique and identifiable style....  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues