Various ‘Radiophonic Tape Compositions’

Radiophonic Tape Compositions LP front cover
Radiophonic Tape Compositions LP back cover
Radiophonic Tape Compositions LP spread
Radiophonic Tape Compositions LP side 1

This LP documents an electroacoustic music competition organized in 1985 by Australian 2MBS FM radio, from St Leonards near Sydney, New South Wales. The prize winners were awarded various grants (see liner notes) and an inclusion in this disc. The LP is titled Radiophonic Tape Compositions, yet the works don’t exactly resort to radio art as such, being mostly electroacoustic pieces. They were certainly aired at the time during one of the avantgarde music shows the station maintained to this day. Australian electroacoustic music is an ancient tradition which goes back to Percy Grainger and Tristram Cary, and has been expertly documented in the Artefacts of Australian Experimental Music anthology (here). But the genre is also constantly stimulated by new composers and ongoing public funding, as well as independent, web-based composers – see PS below.

♫ Three of the compositions on this disc are entirely based on electronic sounds, either from the Fairlight CMI synthesizer (Robert Douglas and Michael Hannan) or from computer programming in the case of Peter Schaefer. Peter Mummé‘s Veronica… is an electroacoustic work using musique concrète sounds of water and children’s bathroom activities. The Jon Rose contribution is a cornucopia of noises, found sounds and any kind of sonic provocation,  including the voice of William Burroughs.

01 Peter Mummé Veronica Takes A Bath (14:18)
02 Peter Schaefer See (10:11)
03 Robert Douglas Homage To Bessemer (13:07)
04 Jon Rose Colony: Survival in the Right Hemisphere (5:21)
05 Michael Hannan Callisto (5:58)

Total time 48:40
LP released by Music Broadcasting Society, Sydney, Australia, 1985


Post Scriptum:
In September 2010, SoundCloud user Andrew Bishop aka Anbis, from Sidney, created this wonderful 54mins mix called September Mix, exclusively featuring non-professional Australian composers releasing their music online. A rather climatic experience, the mix features some great sounds and digital sound treatments. Download and streaming files available.

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10 Responses to “Various ‘Radiophonic Tape Compositions’”

  1. 1 s.borges November 2, 2010 at 4:12 am

    Parla Continuo!

    What a surprise to find this here! Woe! Excellent choice – and if I may, a bit of, eh?, propaganda of my own work – in a more or less similar vein to this most recent upload:

    A modest electric acoustic piece which I composed in memory of the late Ms. Delia Derbyshire, one of the most inspired members of BBC’s Radiophonic workshop during the 60s/70s – her brilliant “Blue Veils & Golden Sands” is one of my all-time favorites!

    Hope you enjoy my piece!

    All the best, s., rio.

  2. 2 continuo November 2, 2010 at 6:40 am

    Hi, Sergio. I’ll give your music a try and leave a comment on SoundCloud. Thanks for dropping by.

  3. 3 a November 2, 2010 at 7:19 pm

    totally excellent download. Thank you.

  4. 4 continuo November 2, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    Hi, Alex. Just been watching the Charles Rosen video on your site. Great film with extraordinary sounds. Glad you enjoyed the above disc. Thanks for dropping by.

  5. 5 alex November 5, 2010 at 4:17 pm

    Thank you sir! Keep up the great content here.

  6. 6 dotjerome November 12, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    Thanks for the upload! Love Radiophonics and was glad to discover the Artefacts of Australian Experimental Music anthology series from this post, also.

  7. 7 continuo November 12, 2010 at 3:10 pm

    The Australian electroacoustic music goldmine is worth investigating, I think. Thanks for your comment.

  8. 8 Alias Frequencies November 12, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    Thanks for sharing this obscure classic on your excellent blog.

    You may be interested in Alias Frequencies, an Australian netlabel for experimental and electroacoustic music. Some of our artists have also been presenters on 2MBS-FM, such as Rik Rue and Wake Up and Listen.

  9. 9 continuo November 13, 2010 at 10:49 am

    I’m streaming some of the AF releases right now – currently Lloyd Barrett (AF041) is playing. Very nice. Seems there’s some interesting music for me on you netlabel. Thanks for dropping by.

  10. 10 ijwilson November 18, 2012 at 5:17 am

    2MBS has always been a great leader in experimental music and radio shows. During the day, the programming is mostly classical, jazz and blues — but as soon as the clock ticks over midnight, shows with names like Our World Through Serotonin, Stalking the Nightmare, The Dust Museum, Ultima Thule and Background Noise, have entertained late-night listeners for the last few decades.

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