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Remixing the Radiophonic Workshop

Chris McAvoy goes meta with old BBC samples.

What better source of raw sound materials than a nearly 20-year-old documentary about the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, the legendary brain trust of electronic-music ingenuity? Chris McAvoy goes to town on samples from the 1979 production The New Sound of Music, transforming the Radiophonic’s own transformations, taking an old lampshade and an empty tin can and from them generating beats and textures, just as the workshop itself did. “Anything … could be doctored with the tape recorder,” says the narrator, before his voice itself is warped just shy of recognizability. It’s a testament to McAvoy’s activities that you can’t tell if the self-reflecting, hall-of-mirrors echoes imposed humorously on the following phrase were his own, or in the documentary: “Whatever this microphone picks up is being fed to this loudspeaker back to this microphone … round and round.”

Track originally posted at More from McAvoy, who’s based in Boulder, Colorado, at

By Marc Weidenbaum

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