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23.06.2009
Reflections on Classical Music

Akira Rabelais

Reflections on Classical Music, Akira Rabelais akira

Born and raised in South Texas, Akira Rabelais is an intellectual pioneer as much as anything else, issuing forth musical creations and inventions from his seat at California Institute of the Arts. A fascination with sound, combined with a philosophical and literary bent helped lay the foundations for the musical path he has followed since 1990 - he describes himself as a "composer writing software, not an engineer making music." The software he is most renowned for is the Argeïphontes Lyre. With functions like Eviscerator Reanimator, Time Domain Mutation, and Morphological Disintegration, the Lyre is a program that allows the user to make a number of alterations to a piece of pre-recorded sound.

The program quickly became a favorite of electronic music composers such as Terre Thaemitz and Scanner, who have used it to create disorientating sound shifts. Rabelais' own release, ‘Elongated Pentagonal Pyramid’ in 1999 also featured the Lyre, with its multiple layers of gently wavering sound. He has collaborated with various musicians including Björk, David Sylvian, Harold Budd, Nobukazu Takemura, Stephan Mathieu and Ekkehard Ehlers.