Thomas Echols is a classical guitarist, songwriter, circuit builder, and synth fetishist living in Austin, TX. His work is an exploration of the interface between conventional compositional structures, old and new technology, ambient textures, and simple, emotive songcraft.
Dr. Thomas Echols: “Telemetry” is an interactive performance that uses software I designed to generate a score to be sightread by a quartet of musicians. The background structure of the algorithm is based on 18th century species counterpoint (a la Johann Fux’s Gradus ad Parnassum). Because of this, the algorithm is capable of composing counterpoint in the style of Bach, but, through the addition of various chromaticisms, extended harmonies and non-diatonic pitch collections, it also composes in a variety of more modern styles. Audience members are invited to modulate compositional parameters that are accessed through a user interface on an ipad. The score is created in real time, while the musicians are performing it. The presentation will culminate in an electronic music performance using the same algorithm to control a modular synthesizer, exploring an array of exotic sounds and textures in addition to the more traditional sounds of the string quartet.