32kg: Performance Systems for a Post-Digital Age

Richards, John

Proceedings of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression

Why is a seemingly mundane issue such as airline baggageallowance of great significance in regards to the performancepractice of electronic music? This paper discusses how aperformance practice has evolved that seeks to question thebinary and corporate digital world. New ’instruments’ andapproaches have emerged that explore ’dirty electronics’ and’punktronics’: DIY electronic instruments made from junk.These instruments are not instruments in the traditionalsense, defined by physical dimensions or by a set number ofparameters, but modular systems, constantly evolving, nevercomplete, infinitely variable and designed to be portable. Acombination of lo- and hi-fi, analogue and digital,synchronous and asynchronous devices offer new modes ofexpression. The development of these new interfaces formusical expression run side-by-side with an emerging postdigital aesthetic.