aidan mcmahon - i/a recording

aidan mcmahon

I/a recording was written and produced by Aidan McMahon.


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Aidan writes:

This piece is about the tension between experience and the impulse to record it. The two, I believe, are incompatible. What happens when the experience you want to record is another person? How does this interrupt the relationship, or improve it?

When I first started this piece, I used a text to speech voice because it was convenient. The voice, named Justine, was eerily passable. After a time, I began to appreciate the voice itself. It was a pure recording. The phrases it recited were entirely new, never having been spoken before.

90% of the sounds in this piece come from my home recordings. Mixed with Justine's cold, chop and paste voice, the tension between these two worlds reflect the odd divisiveness of inscribing living moments into cold media.

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Inspiring Aidan in the world of sound and beyond:

I listened to a lot of Nicholas Jaar, the Chilean/ American electronic music composer, while making this piece. I tried to mimic with my narrative what he does in his music. He blends texture to make very visual, fluid and sensual scenes. Mary Wigman's "Witch Dance," Dreamcrusher, Yorgos Lanthimos, J.M Coetzee, Alice Munro, Artaud's "Theatre and the Plague," "Frog and Toad," the spring, "Queer Voices" by Freya Jarman-Invens, mouth sounds.

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Constellations Says by Amita Kirpalani:

Coming next week

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Aidan McMahon is an audio producer and editor currently based in Halifax, NS. His docs and radio drama have featured on CKDU, CJLO, and Radiophrenia. Aidan is currently working on a doc about the Collin's Bay Prison bee-keeping program. Find more of Aidan’s work here.