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Architectonics for Ondes Musicales, 2022

30 minutes, 8 channels

commissioned BY Melbourne Electronic Sound Studio (MESS)

SONOROUS IV, the substation (2022)

Using ultra sensitive contact microphones intended for measuring seismic vibrations, artist Amias Hanley has recorded the acoustic energy that travels through and articulates The Substation’s architecture and surrounding infrastructure, capturing a haunting auditory impression of the landscape and the building’s spectral expression.

Through this performance the building’s sonic character and surroundings are brought into conversation with selected synthesisers and electronic instruments from MESS’ historic collection, notably the Ondes Musicales. Items from the collection have been chosen for their expressive qualities and timbral synergy with the source material, and are used to voice and accentuate themes of transition and hauntology that unfold in the work.


Distant rhythms of the adjacent railway, soft resonance of air flow through the ventilation ducts and the illusory melodies of the oil pipeline contouring the east-facing wall, will be diffused across eight discrete channels conjuring an impression of the environment to emerge through the architecture – inviting audiences to listen across time, to attune to the building's multi-purpose existence, through shifting climates and the making of social relations.

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