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Live from the bardo: Éliane Radigue’s synth interpretation of ‘The Tibetan Book of the Dead’
08.24.2017
08:30 am
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Éliane Radigue as pictured on the cover of ‘Feedback Works 1969-1970
 
In 1988, the electronic composer Éliane Radigue completed Kyema, Intermediate States, a sonic representation of the after-death state described in the Bardo Thödol (or Tibetan Book of the Dead). It became the first section of her three-part meditation on death, Trilogie de la Mort.

Radigue became a Buddhist (with, it’s said, a push from Terry Riley) in the mid-seventies, and Tibetan Buddhism is the subject of much of her subsequent work; she has, for example, composed music based on the life and songs of Milarepa.

Since every source I’ve consulted describes the trilogy as a response to the death of Radigue’s son, Yves Arman, to whom Kyema is dedicated, and to the death of one of her spiritual teachers, it’s worth pointing out that Kyema was completed and had already made its debut when Yves Arman died suddenly in a car crash the following year. Similarly, my powerful search engine only turns up bhikkus associated with Radigue (Pawo Rinpoche and Kunga Rinpoche, in their pertinent incarnations) who died in 1991. So I begin to doubt these deaths inspired the work in its initial stage.
 

 
A limited, numbered edition of Trilogie de la Mort came packaged in a skull sculpted by Radigue’s former husband, the artist Arman.

Continues after the jump…

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Posted by Oliver Hall
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08.24.2017
08:30 am
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The electronic sound baths of Eliane Radigue
02.21.2011
11:26 pm
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The wonderful Eliane Radigue now composes exclusively for acoustic instruments but here are a couple of her slowly unfolding and deceptively complex electronic works for your listening pleasure along with an utterly charming video portrait. These works, composed entirely on the ARP 2500, the same model that was used in Close Encounters to communicate with the E.T.s, and recorded to a consumer grade reel-to-reel are a mind-clearing delight and will reward the patient listener with layers of subliminal tones and rhythms. Listen carefully.
 
An excerpt from Adnos 1 (1975)

 
An excerpt from Σ = a = b = a + b (1969)

 
A brief visit to the home studio of Eliane Radigue and her beautiful (and keyboard-less!) ARP 2500:

 
With thanks to Justin Meldal-Johnsen !

 

Posted by Brad Laner
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02.21.2011
11:26 pm
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