MusicityGlobal Commission

“Architecture-inspired music and sound art in the very place that sparked its creation. Founded in 2010 by Nick Luscombe, Musicity invites musicians and recording artists to compose tracks in response to buildings and locations in cities around the world. Our aim is to support and promote new music, and also to transform the experience of listening to it.”

Resist [Faraday Memorial]

So Michael Faraday was a scientist..

The First thing I did was head to the site, The Faraday Memorial is a building that always puzzled me as a child. It was for me a shiny metal box in the middle of the crazy roundabout of Elephant and Castle. Little did I know that it was a memorial for an acclaimed scientist.

I wrote down all the initial thoughts and feelings that came to me when I thought about the building and wrote them down. Altogether I had around 30 words, narrowing them down to 6; Power, Reflection, Modern, Future, Magnetic and Brutal. All referring to building, its statute and relationship with its surroundings, often reflecting the city in its shiny metal casing. Faraday was essentially investigating the nature of electricity, I however was investigating how electricity in such a space could manifest through sound, what steel and power and magnetism could feel like.

I started off with two separate tracks, which further along I would realise matched perfectly together. The first focused on ethereal sounds, field recordings recorded at the site or on the tube, drones, ghostly howls etc.. I wanted to make people feel like they were inside the structure. The ghostly echoes of technology, hums, beeps and silence. During the process some lyrics came to me. At the time I didn’t know what melody it would take, I had no chords or sense of rhythm, at the time they were simply ideas.

Power sending power

Over spilling waves

I live inside a power field 

Resisting powers waves

In the wider context of Elephant and Castle I reflected on how it was a contested space, at risk of or we can argue in the midst of social cleansing and full scale cultural and architectural change at the hands of profit hungry developers. I questioned how we can both live in powerful places, economically culturally, even geographically and resist the incoming power waves of those who seek only to profit from it.

The second track was more upbeat giving a nod to the placement of the memorial in a buzzing urban metropolis. Following the addition of a groove, I drew out a wave of my own illustrating how the two tracks may come together. This wave demonstrated the journey from field to function, to voices and poetry, the journey in the track attempts to illustrate change and comment on the area the memorial is sitting upon.

I’m just tryna vocalise synthesise change

If they’re building high rise towers then the landscape’s gonna change

Where there is power there’s resistance and the two they inter-change

I’m just tryna vocalise synthesise change 


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