Peter Klausmeyer – Cambrian Sea, for electronics (1968)

This piece was put together in the University of Michigan Electronic Music Studio in January, 1968. There is nothing particularly complicated about the material used; all the sounds are electronic in origin.

White noise formed the basis of the first couple of minutes of the piece. The signal was split into several components, filtered through two Krohnhite band-pass filters, re-mixed and shaped by a Moog envelope generator-voltage controlled amplifier combination.

The “metal” sounds were made by modulating a mixture of three sine waves with a white noise signal whose short attack & decay envelope came from the Moog equipment mentioned above. An old tube-type balanced modulator was used here.

The “belch” sounds were made in a fashion similar to that of the metallic sounds, except that a very low sawtooth wave was the modulating signal instead of the white noise, the frequency of one of the sine generators being altered by hand during the decay of the envelope.

With the return of the sea sounds at the end, the piece is closed off in the age-old, time-tested A-B-A fashion. –Peter Klausmeyer

Art by Taiga Chiba


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