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Becoming Noise Music: Style, Aesthetics, and History (Hardcover)
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Becoming Noise Music tells the story of noise music in its first 50 years, using a focus on the music's sound and aesthetics to do so. Part One focuses on the emergence and stabilization of noise music across the 1980s and 1990s, whilst Part Two explores noise in the twenty-first century. Each chapter contextualizes - tells the story - of the music under discussion before describing and interpreting its sound and aesthetic.
Stephen Graham uses the idea of 'becoming' to capture the unresolved 'dialectical' tension between 'noise' disorder and 'musical' order in the music itself; the experiences listeners often have in response; and the overarching 'story' or 'becoming' of the genre that has taken place in this first fifty or so years. The book therefore doubles up on becoming: it is about both the becoming it identifies in, and the larger, genre-making process of the becoming of, noise music. On the latter count, it is the first scholarly book to focus in such depth and breadth on the sound and story of noise music, as opposed to contextual questions of politics, history or sociology. Relevant to both musicology and noise audiences, Becoming Noise Music investigates a vital but analytically underexplored area of avant-garde musical practice.
About the Author
Stephen Graham is Head of the Arts & Humanities School at Goldsmiths, University of London, UK, and Senior Lecturer in Music. Stephen's book, Sounds of the Underground: A Cultural, Political, and Aesthetic Mapping of Underground and Fringe Music, was published in 2016. Stephen has pieces on popular modernism, late style and fringe music writing in journals such as Popular Music and Twentieth Century Music. Stephen is co-author of a multi-generic history of 20th-century music due out in 2022.