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November 17, 2010 6:34 PM   Subscribe

I would like to hear every note of the chromatic scale played simultaneously in different octaves by an orchestra. Does such an experience exist for me on these, our Internets?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 to Media & Arts (9 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
If all else fails, you could hear all that dissonance at any music store (in front of a high end keyboard with a good string patch). Good luck in your search. Your weird search. ;-)
posted by goblinbox at 6:37 PM on November 17, 2010

This thing makes some interesting sounds - of course, it's not "real" though.
posted by davey_darling at 6:37 PM on November 17, 2010 [11 favorites]

That's fantastic davey_darling, thank you!
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:42 PM on November 17, 2010

So far I think it sounds like dying in Geometry Wars.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:52 PM on November 17, 2010

That is really fascinating.
posted by starvingartist at 7:36 PM on November 17, 2010

Okay, this doesn't really do what you want, but the closest composer I can think of who may have written something like that would be Iannis Xenakis. A representative piece: Syrmos, or maybe even better try Metastasis.

Not all notes played at the same time but woah. I think I used to have a copy of his book on composition, and it's all fucking calculus. I mean, like, literally calculus, I'm not being metaphorical or anything.
posted by dubitable at 7:40 PM on November 17, 2010 [1 favorite]

The quiet chord at the beginning of Atmosphères by Ligeti has every note in the chromatic scale over five octaves, each instrument playing a different note. I think Penderecki did the same sort of really huge tone clusters.

Jonny Greenwood does this a lot in his string arrangements. It's in the climaxes at the end of Climbing Up the Walls (especially at the very end where everything else dies down), though there the notes are actually actually quarter-tones apart, and All I Need, where they wanted to imitate white noise you hear in your ears when music's playing really loudly. I think it's also somewhere in his orchestral piece Popcorn Superhet Receiver.
posted by abcde at 7:47 PM on November 17, 2010 [7 favorites]

(It's really worth getting a proper recording of Atmosphères and putting it on decent speakers or headphones, BTW. Lossy compression and laptop speakers are not kind to that chord. It's surprisingly pretty when you can hear it clearly, though I may have a nonstandard definition of "pretty.")
posted by nebulawindphone at 7:59 PM on November 17, 2010

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