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Pacific Tubular Waves / Immersion

  • Titre: Pacific Tubular Waves / Immersion
  • Artiste: Michel Redolfi
  • Label: Recollection GRM
  • Format: LP
  • Genres: Historical Recordings, Contemporary Composition, Experimental Electronic, Misc France
  • Prix: €19,90UE (incl. 19% TVA)€16,72non UE

Cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin, July 2014
Digital transfer: Diego Losa
Sleeve & new anaglyph 3D design: Stephen O’Malley
Original 3D artwork & inner sleeve wave photo: Michel Redolfi
All other photos & portrait by Donna Cline
Anaglyphic 3D supervision: Guy Ventouillac
Translations: Valérie Vivancos
Coordination GRM: Christian Zanési & François Bonnet
Executive Production: Peter Rehberg



Electronic music for Synclavier digital synthesizer
Commissioned by the Groupe de Recherches Musicales of the Institut National de l'Audiovisuel.
Premiered as a quadraphonic version on the Acousmonium on May 7, 1979, Cycle Acousmatique at the Studio 104 at Radio France.

• Inner Tube
• Crystal Lips
• A Smooth Ride
• Pacific Motion
• The Underwater Park at Sunset

Inspired by the oceanic horizons of San Diego, this work was created one year before the start of my research on underwater sound. It does not yet evokes the substance of the depths but is focused on the kinetics of the Pacific breakers.
The first four movements frame different visions of the energy delivered by the rolling waves as a kind of auditory surfing on the crest and into the trough of the wave (movements 1-3), followed by a high speed crossing within the tubular cyclone (4). The piece ends with easing waves at dusk.
The quadraphonic concert version is designed to surround the listeners and take them through a dynamic spatialisation, a kind of "ride" with furtive sounds, impacts and a vortex creating a sonic cinema with great relief scapes.
In terms of the making, Pacific Tubular Waves, is a purely electronic music, a solo performance on the first digital Synclavier synthesizer.
The flexibility of its touch keys enabled me to intuitively program a sonic organic life quality with a concrete quality. Here the computer was used to magnify the texture and behavior of the oceanic material though never mimicking it.

Composed on Synclavier I at the Groupe de Musique Expérimentale de Marseille (G.M.E.M.)
Quadraphonic mixing at the Groupe de Recherches Musicales (INA-GRM) for its premiere in 1979.
Stereo version for the vinyl edition part of the 1980 GRM collection and on compact disc in 1988.

Award of the Luigi Russolo Futurist Foundation, 1979 Varese, Italy.


Electroacoustic music for Synclavier synthesizer and underwater recordings.
Commissioned by the Groupe de Recherches Musicales of the Institut National de l'Audiovisuel for the first vinyl edition in the INA-GRM collection in 1980.

• Surface
• Partial Immersion
• Deep Immersion
• Total Immersion This work dates back to my Californian period (1977-1983) when I started a number of projects attempting to musically translate my discovery of the Pacific; from the movement of its rolling waves to its depths (particularly in this piece).
Composing Immersion started with underwater recordings using a hydrophone. After recording the shifting sands and the rolling pebbles under the breakers, I came up with the idea of dipping a sonar loudspeaker underwater to diffuse my Pacific Tubular Waves piece (made the previous year) below the surface. The music was thus shuffled by the waves and unexpected filtering effects resulted from its passing through clouds of foam. Its dispersion at sea by currents would send back incredibly smooth harmonic echoes. A new submarine soundscape was thus being outlined. The recording of this natural remixing process is the guiding thread of the piece. It is interspersed with sequences composed in the studio with the Synclavier. Alternating dry/wet, for a gradual immersion through increasingly calm and dense increments.
A few months later, in 1981, in the ocean reserve of La Jolla Cove, my Sonic Waters installation invited listeners to directly experience music underwater, thanks to a powerful immersed sound system that resonated through the body. The underwater concert was born; Immersion had been its aesthetic trigger and technical prototype.

Music composed in 1980 on the Synclavier synthesizer.
The piece is dedicated to its designer, the composer Jon Appleton.
Submarine recordings made in 1979 in San Diego, at Birdrock and Windansea coves. .


Perception in relief of sounds in space ... Perception of the relief ...
Three-dimensional Visible Images through the glasses attached hereto. Analogous to stereo, the anaglyph graphic process consists of two left and right points view of the same object. It takes a moment to adjust to the color filter glasses . The feeling of space is expanding proportionally to the distance of observation, from 80 cm to several meters.


A singular figure of the electroacoustic landscape, Michel Redolfi, a longtime friend of the GRM, has constantly been experimenting with the listening process. The unique sound of Redolfi (a true sound designer) comes across as crystal clear in his music, especially when, in both pieces featured on the record, he used the first digital synthesizer: the Synclavier. By following the imaginary scope of the waves Immersion and Pacific Tubular Waves, vividly illustrate Michel Redolfi’s research on underwater music. Here they are available again in their original format.

Christian Zanési & François Bonnet