R. Luke DuBois
Composer and computer programmer R. Luke DuBois creates what have been called sonic summations. His most talked-about piece, “Billboard,” gets mentioned in hundreds of blogs; DuBois created a composite of 857 songs from Billboard’s No. 1 hits from the years 1958 to 2000. The piece is not a medley of tune quotations; instead, it’s a summation of the sound frequencies for each song. Songs are allocated one second for each of their weeks as No. 1 singles. The results, to my ears, are washes or blocks of sound, of various lengths. On this album, DuBois also applies his technique to Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier and to the entire soundtrack of Casablanca. It’s a case where the idea seems more intriguing than the result. The best advice might just be to lose all preconceptions before listening.