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Forums » Misc » Ultrasonic frequencies in modern music
C-allen-25 October 2010 at 5:52pmPosts: 3 (0 today)Status: offline
First off, I'd like to say this is my first post in the PG forums, but I've been a lifelong fan of his music. One of my earliest memories is my older brother and I getting excited when the music video for Sledgehammer would play on MTV. Growing up (get it?), I've come to know and love all of Peter's recordings from Car to Scratch my Back (I'm hoping for the boxed set for xmas lol). So, needless to say, I'm happy to be here on the forums.
Ok, so now that my geek-rant is out of the way, I've been developing an idea I had a few years ago. It started out as the concept of using sounds right at the threshold of the audible hearing range (~40KHz) to create a new sound, something original, but wouldn't sound like nails on a chalkboard. This idea floated around in my brain a for quite some time, when I stumbled on this study (http://jn.physiology.org/cgi/content/full/83/6/354 done by some men in Japan, which suggests that ultrasonic frequencies, when recorded and played back with specialized equipment for the ~20KHz - ~100KHz range, affects brain processes differently than music within the audible 20-40KHz range. They specifically use gamelan music in the study, but it seems that any sort of bell-type instrument is capable of attaining these "HFCs", as the study calls them.
So, where am I going with this? Well, this study got me thinking - has there been any use of this technology, these HFC's, in modern music? Portico Quartet and Gamelan Pacifica are the only examples I've heard as of yet, but they are played back under the 40KHz cap set by most stereo equipment, so the full effect of the instruments is not experienced - there is the possibility of recording the inaudible frequency range using specialized recording equipment, SACD technology and hi-fi stereos with super tweeters for playback, but the current state of the music industry doesn't support the use of such specialized systems. All the same, it's my belief that this could be the tip of the iceberg for a whole new world of music - an additional 80KHz of headroom to experiment with using either physical or digital instruments, because even though those frequencies are inaudible, they still have the potential to shape audible sound in new ways we haven't even thought of yet.
I've put myself on a road in life recently that will hopefully bring me to a career in music recording/production within the next decade, and this will be the first thing I want to experiment with when I have access to the proper resources, but I thought I should share this idea with Peter and everyone else on this board - if you have access to HFC-producing instruments, recording and playback equipment capable of up to 100 KHz or more, I would like to hear your thoughts on this. Or even if you don't, I still think this is a very interesting and enticing idea, so let's talk about it
C-allen-25 October 2010 at 6:03pmPosts: 3 (0 today)Status: offline
Btw, speaking of Sledgehammer, I love how my default avatar is the dancing chicken. I think I'm going to keep it at that hahaha
Probably a good idea to put any pet's out before playing the sounds I would think.
and welcome :-]
C-allen-25 October 2010 at 11:53pmPosts: 3 (0 today)Status: offline
Hehehe, but there's always the possibility that the ultrasonic frequencies, doubled with audible frequencies, also affect animals differently as well. I wish I had the resources to test these ideas out, but the equipment is roughly $5-6k altogether that I don't have, and my ideal setup would be the synthesized route, so the ultrasonic frequencies would be more exact and calculated, as opposed to the seemingly random HFCs emitted from bell-type instruments.thing is, I don't think software yet exists that could synthesize those frequencies. At this point, it's all theoretical. That fact bugs the hell out of me lol.
K'Ehleyr26 October 2010 at 1:54amPosts: 8422 (0 today)Status: offline
As long as you don't cause the brain to implode - it should be interesting