The Shimmering Haze

Alexis Weaver

Details

Abstract

The Shimmering Haze (2019) explores dichotomies of aural perspective, texture and sound source. The piece alludes to our human-induced plastic crisis through the exploration of small, highly active sound objects (which I name 'micro' sounds) embedded within vast, heavily textured sonic backgrounds (which I have termed 'macro' sounds). Comprised of a mix of synthesised sound and close recordings of sinks, kettles and coffee machines, The Shimmering Haze alludes to our man-made plastic crisis and conjures a sonic metaphor for shiny plastic glinting through hazy water. At times menacing, cloying, The Shimmering Haze also exhibits brief moments of linear simplicity – providing a welcome textural respite.

This work was composed as part of a larger portfolio for my Master of Music degree. With its highly detailed spatialisation and sound object placement, the piece is best listened to with quality headphones. While there also exists a stereo speaker-optimised mix, I have provided the headphone-optimised mix for the ACMC.

Bio

Alexis Weaver is an electroacoustic composer based in Sydney, Australia. Alexis draws on field recordings of animals, insects and everyday objects to create whimsical, adventurous radiophonic and acousmatic works. While her principal interest lies in composing fixed-media acousmatic music, she has also composed and collaborated on soundtracks for animation, short film, radio, theatre, and dance. Alexis’ work has been broadcast in Australia, France and Scotland, as well as featured on New Weird Australia’s Solitary Wave (In) (2019) and RMN Classical’s Electroacoustic and Beyond II (2017). While studying a Bachelor of Composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Alexis was awarded People’s Choice Award and First Place in the 2015 and 2016 University of Sydney Verge Awards respectively for her acousmatic works. In January 2018, Alexis was awarded the National Council of Women’s Australia Day Prize for her research undertaken during her Honours year on the visibility and practice of female electroacoustic composers. She is currently a Master of Music candidate at the Sydney Conservatorium, where she also teaches composition. Her research has focused on the transferral of high-quality acousmatic music to everyday, portable diffusion systems – naming this new, inclusive audio movement Small Diffusion. Alexis is co-founder of composer collective lost+sound, who in 2018 launched a concert series celebrating emerging experimental artists.