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Treason: Movements I & II - Graphic Score for Two Pianos

by Sebastian Melmoth

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Like all bad ideas, this one spawned from listening to Kasabian. Their insightful refrain: “I don't turn around, 'cause your reason is treason” got us thinking about employing subversive tactics to counter the corrosive political climate that is currently testing everyone's patience. Election season 2015 brought with it Manifesto Week. We wanted to comment on the fact that these documents used opaque language specifically to confuse and misdirect their readers. The messages broadcast on the radio were obtuse, the political motivations unclear. The rhetoric espoused in the televised debates was just as impenetrable. What better way to respond to this nonsense than with nonsense of our own? Taking cues from artists like George Maciunas (piano violator) and Bogusław Schaefer (graphic score enthusiast) we translated the Labour and Conservative manifestos into graphic scores, later swapping the abstract collages and reinterpreting them for piano. A two-party system; two manifestos; two graphic scores; two broken pianos; two individuals united under an Eastern Freeway. Finally, a conversation can be had that does not alienate the common stooge! As a piece of music, this project was published in Julie Kane's Indestructible Energy Zine, Issue 5 (2015). Indestructible Energy is an underground almanac showcasing international artists from various disciplines. Each issue has a set theme to which practitioners are invited to respond. After completing the recording and while listening back to the results, we realised that the music we created best resembles a score for a silent film. It didn't take long to find Germaine Dulac's 1928 Surrealist classic 'La Coquille et le Clergyman' (The Seashell and the Clergyman). Being of almost identical length as our music and syncing up amazingly well, with minimal editing required, the film and its accompanying soundtrack are testament to the concept of synchronicity. Many decades apart and unaware of each others' exploits, two disparate group of artists combine their work through the utilisation of time and technology to create a new piece of work that stands on its own like brazen morning wood. We hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoyed making it. We are Sebastian Melmoth, a London-based multimedia arts collective and this is Treason.

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credits

released June 10, 2015

All tracks composed, arranged and performed by Sebastian Melmoth. Recorded at Eva Sound Studios, Leyton May 2015. Produced by Sebastian Melmoth. Mastered by Hyperstasis. Sebastian Melmoth is not a person, but a sonic art project that likes to push boundaries and eat chocolate. Sebastian Melmoth are Laura Smith and Ilia Rogatchevski. All artwork by the band. Set in Akzidenz Grotesk and Superclarendon.

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Sebastian Melmoth London, UK

Sebastian Melmoth is an experimental post punk band from London. Formed in 2007, the group presently consists of Pete Da Clinker, Laura Michelle Smith and Ilia Rogatchevski. Working within the popular music spectrum, their aim is to produce a diverse range of intellectually challenging and explorative sonorous content. ... more

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