Looping, cycles, repetition - it’s all present in our history, art, literature, and nature. This week in two acts (plus a prologue), how loops affect us all, from every 10 or 20 seconds to every 10,000 years.
We begin at the Staten Island Museum, home to the largest collection of cicadas in North America. Brood II of the 17-year magicicada genus is returning to the East Coast this summer, which the museum is celebrating with a yearlong exhibition and site-specific sculpture piece. I spoke with Alex Bolesta, of the American Museum of Natural History’s Invertebrate Zoology Collection and the SI Museum, about the unique life cycle of those cicadas.
I then talk to K Ishibashi, previously the frontman of Jupiter One, then a touring musician for Of Montreal and Regina Spektor, and now the one-man band that is Kishi Bashi. He uses a loop and effect pedal to not only create orchestral sonic landscapes, but also to mess with time and meter - sort of bringing the sound of a strings section to a dance club.
Finally I speak to Matt Greco, an artist-in-residence at the Museum of Arts and Design and art professor at Queens College, about his series “History Vessels” and the revival of an older artistic ethos.
Special thanks this episode to Alex Bolesta, K Ishibashi, Matt Greco, the Staten Island Museum, the Museum of Arts and Design, Kellyn Slone at 2:30 Publicity, Prof. Michael Sugrue, Signe Valentinsson, KEXP and NPR Music.
The music and sounds for this episode, per usual, come from the Free Music Archive unless otherwise noted.
Sound of a mezzo cicada as recorded by Freesound user Tito Lahaye
“Fiya” by tUnE-yArDs (via NYC Taper, remixed and looped by me)
Snippets of “Atticus, In the Desert” and “I Am the Antichrist to You” by Kishi Bashi, via NPR Music’s recording of his show at the 9:30 Club (available here, used under fair use)
Clip of “Bright Whites” by Kishi Bashi, via KEXP’s recording of his show at CMJ Music Marathon (available here, used under fair use)
“Waiting on the Day” by Tall Tall Trees (used under fair use)
“Aux Puces no. 2: Carosello” by Circus Marcus
Sound of a music box by Freesound user klankbeeld
“Búsqueda exploratoria #007 - Rue Laide Coupe” by Circus Marcus
“Brown Wax Recording” via the Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project
“Wet Riffs,” via Incompetech
“Plasticities” by Andrew Bird, via the Internet Archive (remixed and looped by me)
To those who subscribe to the ThursTriv Feed, I present to you “Timeline of a Loop,” the latest episode of my other podcast, infinitespace.