Yesterday evening, John Matthias performed for and spoke live to BBC Radio 3 for the drive-time show ‘In Tune’.
His performance with fellow musicians Jay Auborn and Dunstan Belcher brought the show ‘right up to date’ with a performance using violin, piano and John’s instrument the Neurogranular Sampler, creating an ‘absolutely fantastic’ performance of three tracks from his new album Geisterfahrer: the title track, Birdsong and Close-Knit.
John described the Neurogranular Sampler’s process whereby a ‘violin is played into the computer, which then takes part of that sound… when the neurons fire, it takes those pieces and retriggers them’, explaining that the reason the instrument seems to work well is because these firings are not random, but are patterned. Jay, who used the instrument to perform on the show, described the important two-way relationship between what John plays and what the computer puts back to him, adding ‘to me, it’s another tool to use to explore being creative’.
This trio of musicians are performing at the ‘Thinking Music’ Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival this Sunday in Plymouth, an event described by Sean Rafferty as ‘gaining a reputation for being a very cutting edge but joyous occasion’. Listen back to the show here for all the fantastic performances and explanations of John’s work. His album Geisterfahrer is released on February 17th on the Village Green label, with a Vinyl LP release on the 24th.