At night it became the loudest thing in the room. It was the fridge, a mini-fridge to be exact and it was not even located in the same room. No, it was in the other room, but there was just a door frame that separated both. When everything went quiet, the fridge kept on humming. It never stopped. But it wasn’t your standard ground hum, it was more like the sound of a blizzard. Here we were staying at the guesthouse of a friend in the middle of Los Angeles, and in the middle of the night it sounded like we were in the middle of the tundra, alone, with just the howling storm outside. What a remarkable fridge. Or was I just imagining things late at night when I couldn’t fall back asleep, when the tiniest things sounded so amplified? I didn’t know. Only a psycho-stochastic experiment would help. One day as we left the guesthouse, I placed a Zoom H2N recorder right in the middle of the room, right next to the fridge. The sound of the room, the sound of the fridge were captured without the sound of any human interfering. Many months later, back in my new studio in the middle of Village Green, I played the recording back for the first time. It was indeed a fascinating sound, a drone really, changing but periodic. This gave me a spark: what if I would use the refrigerator as an oscillator? Like in the Wiener Process (2010-2014) I took a uniform random distribution of pitches which fade in and out and move in space over the course of an hour, but this time the fridge became the synthesizer, the electronic sound source, the source of all sonic life, it became the album Mini Fridge (2018-2019). [ source code: https://github.com/fellowcraft/py/blob/master/fridge.py ]
Notes from aquietroom
When usual sounds and soundscapes aren’t enough, that’s when Frank Rothkamm comes into one’s mind. Frank rather quickly rose to fame with his John Cage-esque performance arts and in 1986 he published his first solo record. Afterwards, but to mention a few things, he composed trailer music for Star Wars 3D, appeared in Playboy magazine in 1991, did remixes for the Cranberries and DJ Spooky and founded his own record label Flux Records.
It can be said without a doubt that evil things always cause something good to happen. After the rain, the sun will shine again. A few years after being diagnosed with tinnitus, he started working on psychostochastics as a means of composition. His epic piece “Wiener Process”, a 24hr long Csound score was thus released on 24 Cds or download.
Up to date, Frank has released 844 tracks, 175 albums and 111 PDFs. It is without a doubt a lucky strike I stumbled upon his music and therefore a great honor to have him on the artist roster at aquietroom.
|Catalog No:||aqr004 (LN523)|
|Sound Artist:||Frank Rothkamm|
|Visual Artist:||Bernd Jungwirth