"In the spring of 2002 I was invited to create a sound installation in Lier, Belgium. I decided to base the sounds on an exploration of binaural beats - the frequency emulation of various brainwave states through the hard panning of slightly detuned sine waves. Meant to be listened to with headphones, binaural beats are said to cause the experiencerís brain to tune into the resulting difference tone through the principle of entrainment - a sort of gravitational pull similar to acoustical resonance. If one listens long enough to a pair of waves tuned, for example, 7hz apart (1000hz left ear/1007hz right ear) oneís brain will settle into what is known as the "alpha" state - brain activity commonly defined as being between 7 and 12hz and generally considered a state of creative relaxation associated with various meditation techniques. This was a pretty interesting find for me as it related to compositional techniques I had been implementing more or less intuitively for years. I decided to continue mining this vein."
"Tooling around on the internet one day, visiting various sites involved with binaural beats, I came across a link to a site that mentioned a phenomenon I had never heard of - the Schumann Resonances. SRís (discovered by German scientist W. O. Schumann in the late 50ís) are a set of quasi-standing waves resulting from continual lightning strikes that cause the earth to resonate as if it were a giant bell. These frequencies all occur within the same range as the brainís frequencies with the fundamental Schumann Resonance averaging about 7.8 - the alpha range. The other measurable harmonics of the SR average around 14hz, 20hz, 26hz, 33hz, 39hz, and 45hz. These are all fairly low to be of much "musical" use - in and of themselves - but if one multiplies them into the audio range one ends up with some very beautiful chords."
"Searching through numerous sites on the web concerned with SR one finds they fall into two categories - new agers who attribute all measures of healing to these "magical" relationships, and scientists doing "hard" research - with much apparent mutual distrust between camps. The one name that kept on showing up on all sites was a Dr. Davis Sentman, a geophysicist at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks who appeared to be the worldís leading authority on such things. After a couple of email exchanges with Dr. Sentman in which he very graciously gave me more information than I could have ever imagined, I put forth my fantasy - I asked if there were any methods for transmitting over the internet the SR data that he and a handful of other scientists were collecting at various remote outposts around the world. I received an email from him the very next day stating that he had written an application that would allow me to receive said information. Needless to say, I was thrilled. With my friend and fellow composer Dafna Naphtali's help I was able to create a connection on my end by tweaking the Max/MSP I had been developing since the beginning of this project. Through a series of conference calls, trials, errors - and one major earthquake in Alaska that knocked out all communication for a couple of crucial days during final testing - we have succeeded in setting up the situation I fantasized about a couple of months prior."
"Regarding which side of the new age vs. science line I consider myself on, as in most things in life I tend to find compelling evidence and arguments for both sides. Resolving these conflicts may be considered a large part of my musical, as well as personal, agenda. Suffice it to say, I find numbers to be quite magical - and the belief in the existence of a consciousness beyond this earthly one, for the most part, quite reasonable."
Listen to Operation:Kracpot...