Deliriant Modifier, the newest collaborative release of Sally Gates (Titan to Tachyons), Trevor Dunn (Mr. Bungle), and Greg Fox, is available now via Riverworm Records.
“Reflecting the insular circumstances of the last few years, I had been reading a lot about the inner worlds of consciousness, the subjective nature of reality, and quantum physics,” explains Gates, talking about the conceptual side of the collaboration.
Coming across the lecture of a critically recognized neuroscientist, Anil Seth, Sally discovered a thesis saying: “Perception = controlled hallucinations. Hallucinations = uncontrolled perception.” Gates explains that by relying on the information around us, perception is generated and controlled through a number of factors. “Essentially, we only perceive the information necessary to function and survive. If our perception were entirely uncontrolled, it would seem as if we were constantly hallucinating, which wouldn’t give us much of a survival rate.”
To reflect this concept musically, this record explores the effect of controls on creativity, asking the question: “Do limitations aid or hinder the functionality in composition?” Exploring the scientific concept of the music field, the trio decided to go with the most boundless form of composition – improvisation.
Delving deep into the recesses of consciousness, Deliriant Modifier takes the listener on a transcendent journey, skillfully navigating between control and spontaneity, our perception of reality, and the intricate web of information that shapes it.
“Improvising is the result of a natural outpouring of everything you absorb,” explains Gates. “Whatever you’ve been listening to, practicing, or even reading, watching.”
The trio’s nimble mastery draws inspiration from the enigmatic realms of quantum physics, subjective realities, and controlled hallucinations. The auditory tapestry woven in Deliriant Modifier resonates not only through its captivating melodies, but also in the visual expressions that accompany it. Getting together in Colin Marston’s studio, Gates, Dunn, and Fox devised different parameters and cues for each improvised composition, with set duration times as one of the key factors.
According to Dunn, “Using limitations as a framework for improvisation is one way to set goals, think about form, and harness the freedom. Anarchy is ok some of the time, but it’s also nice, for the listener and the performer as well, to keep things from going off the rails all the time.”
While all the members contributed to the musical part, Dunn and Gates reflected on the initial concept developing the artwork for Deliriant Modifier.
‘The biggest correlation between the artwork and music was the intuitive and collaborative nature of the work. Music and painting are intertwined for me. Both are expressing whatever conceptual images or feelings I may have about a particular project,” reflects Sally Gates.
According to Dunn, “Improvisation is by nature collaborative so we took our individual modes within the plastic arts (acrylic painting and paper collage) and combined them without overthinking it.”
The listeners are invited to embark on a dual journey. Immersing themselves in the enchanting melodies and meditating over the symbiotic relationship between sound and sight.
Deliriant Modifier Track Listing:
2. Dissolve And Surveil
3. Shifting Squares
5. Nobody, And Nothing
6. Limits Of A Circle
7. Retinal States
8. Angular Isolation
10. Excise Spurious Time