Last updated March 2008
a subjectively filtered, chaotic and hopefully growing list of books, articles, magazines on paper and on the web concerned with theoretical and aesthetic approaches to sound. With the emphasis on sound(art) rather than academic music theory. In No Particular Order!
I accept no responsibility for mistakes in this information, nor can I help you get copies. try the library or see addresses of publishers, or addresses of some shops below. Tips and recomendations are welcome though, mail me at justin "at" this.is
soundsite is an Australian project with theoretical stuff and lots of links to other places...
Dont Rhine has some interesting articles on the economy of ambient music and sound in general.
The World Forum for Acoustic Ecology have a site with many pages of, and links to, sound-art related material.
author: Marta García Quiñones, Franco Fabbri, Jonathan Sterne, Josep Martí, Anahid Kassabian, Ola Stockfelt
title: La Música que no se escucha
publisher: Orquestra del Caos, Barcelona. 2008
description: essays on "background music" - ambient listening, muzak, in relation to public space, radio, politics, composition. In Spanish.
author: Andrés Antenbi Pablo González, Miguel Alonso Cambrón, Jaume Ayats, José Manuel Berenguer, Manuel Delgado, Noel García López, Clara Garí, Daniel López Gómez.
title: Espacios Sonoros, Technopolitica y vida cotidiana - aproximaciones a una antropologia sonora
publisher: Orquestra del caos, Barcelona 2005
description: Noise, sound in relation to the politics of everyday life. spanish and catalan
author: josé antonio sarmiento (editor)
title: Zaj. Concierto de teatro musical
publisher: Sensxperiment 2007
description: a reconstruction of a concert of music-theatre in book form. Zaj (seminal spanish music group with Walter Marchetti, Ramón Barce and Juan Hidalgo) performed works by themselves and John Cage in 1964. The book has photographs, descriptions of the pieces and in some cases, the scores themselves. Spanish text.
author: Walter Zimmerman
title: Desert Plants conversations with 23 American Musicians
publisher: ARC Canada, 1976
description: Interviews with Feldman, Wolfe, Cage, Corner, Glass, Reich, Ashley, Lucier, La Barbara, Oliveros, Rosenboom, Teitelbaum, Austin, Tenny, Nancarrow, Young, Palestine, Morrow, List, Rzewski, Mc Guire, Partch. phew!
author: Brandon LaBelle / Christof Migone
title: Writing Aloud - The sonics of Language
publisher: Errant Bodies Press 2001
description: Many essays and projects on sound and language incl.. Dunn, Whitehead, Robert, Amirkhanian, Dawn, Lucier,LaBelle, Plantenga, Marchetti, Acconci, etc. etc.. includes CD. in English
author: Llorenc Barber / Chema de Francisco
title: el placer de la eschucha
publisher: ardora ediciones, Madrid 2003
description: Interviews with Llorenc Barber about his work (including his bell-concerts, the groups Actum & Taller de Musica Mundana) with many anecdotes on experimental music in spain since the late sixties. in Spanish.
author: Andersen, Bauer, Erharter, Neset, Mokkelbost, Hiorthoy
title: Sonic North
publisher: Office for Contemporary Art, Norway. 2005
description: essays / interviews about experimental music, sound and noise in Norway. incl. Maja Ratke, Lasse Marhaug, Rune Kristoffersen.
author: Sider, Freeman, Sider
title: Soundscape The School of Sound Lectures 1998-2001
publisher: Wallflower Press. London / New York. 2003
description: lectures from the school of sound symposia (mostly on sound in film & tv) contributions from among others, Michel Chion, Manfred Eicher, Walter Murch, Laura Mulvey, David Lynch.
author:Rick Altman (editor)
title: Sound theory / sound practice
publisher: Routledge, NY / AFI film readers. 1992.
description: essays on film sound. theoretical, historical and "neglected domains" by e.g. Chion, Altman, Lawrence, Truppin.
author: Michel Chion
title: La Voix au Cinéma
publisher: Cahiers du cinéma, Paris 1982
description: relation of image to the voice, roles of the voice in cinema. Chion introduces many useful theoretical concepts for analyzing sound in all his books.
author: Michel Chion
title: Le Son au Cinéma
publisher: Cahiers du cinéma, Paris 1985
description: relation of image to sound track, concepts of film music, acousmatic sound, sound effects.
author: Michel Chion
title: Audio-Vision, sound on screen
publisher: Edititions Nathan, Paris, 1990 & Columbia UP, New York 1994
description: an expansion on and bringing together of themes in the other (Cahiers du Cinema) books. Also brought up-to-date with recent technical and formal developments like Dolby Surround.
author: Avital Ronell
title: The Telephone Book. (technology, schizophrenia, electric speech)
publisher:Uni. of Nebraska Press: Lincoln US and London UK. 1989.
description: a classic. schizo-analysis of the telephone, speech, sound, Bell, Heidegger and technology in general.
title: the terrorized term
publisher: selektion 1996 Hohenstaufenstr. 8 60327 Frankfurt/M Germany
description: coll. of writings on sound / art and media. difficult translation (for me!).
author: Dan Lander, Micah Lexier (editors)
title: Sound by Artists
publisher:Art Metropole, Toronto.
description: a collection of artists writings including... Cage, Viola, Neuhaus, Kubisch, Bruinsma, Monahan, Lucier, Whitehead, Schafer, Lockwood, Westerkamp, Marclay. ESSENTIAL READING.
author:René van Peer
title: Interviews with Sound Artists
publisher:Het Apollohuis, Eindhoven NL (Apollo Art About no. 3)
description: interview with Joe Jones, Richard Lerman, Jean Weinfeld, Martin Riches, Yakehisa Kosugi, Horst Rickels, Johan Goedhart, Terry Fox, Christina Kubisch, Jim Pomeroy, Walter Fähnrich, Yoshi Wada, Paul Panhuysen. Most interviews took place in 1987. published 1993.
author: Jacques Attali
title: Noise. The Political Economy of Music
publisher: Manchester Univ. Press (UK), 1985
description: still-provocative de-autonomising of music
author: John Blacking
title: How Musical is Man?
publisher: Faber and Faber, London 1976
isbn: 0 571 10803 2
description: Analysing african music, Blacking argues that all music is folk music; it is socially constructed AND it serves to organise social forms.
author: Simon Frith
title: Performing Rites. On the value of popular music.
publisher: Oxford Univ. Press. 1996
description: concentrates on reception as the method of creating value and meaning in Pop.
author: Dan Graham
title: Rock My Religion
publisher: MIT Press, 1993
description: writings on art and architectural projects, but also on Punk.
author: Hanif Kureishi and John Savage (editors)
title: The Faber book of Pop
publisher: Faber and Faber
description: anthology of (journalistic) writings on pop music from 1942 - 1994.
author: David Toop
title: Ocean of Sound
publisher: Serpent's Tail, London/NY 1995
description: articles, interviews and anecdotes woven together into a lyrical personal analysis of the dissolving of genre borders in 20th C Music.
author: Kodwo Eshun
title: More Brilliant than the Sun
publisher: Quartet, London 1998
description: sonic fiction - the intersection of sci-fi and sound. Machine music, groove, jazz, dub, funk, technology, cyborgs and electricity.
author: Jacqueline Oskamp
title: Radicaal Gewoon (radically normal)
publisher: Mets & Schilt, Amsterdam 2003
description: essay on (20th C) Dutch music incl. interviews with Aa, Andriessen, de Bondt, Dramm, Janssen, de Leeuw, Loevendie, Mengelberg, Raaijmakers, de Vries, Zuidam. (in dutch).
author: (time based arts catalogue)
title:sound re visited / geluid her zien
publisher:VOID editions Amsterdam 1987
description: authors:Huisman, Block, Celant, Ruhe, Furlong, Lindahl, Wijers. "An anthology concerning sound in art" dutch/english. out of print.
author: Dick Raaijmakers (editor)
title: Anti Qua Musica
publisher: Haags Gemeentemuseum 1989
description: "the open musical instrument in art and anti-art". exh. cat. / manifestation with works + texts from Raaijmakers, Barker, Cage, Paik, Rickels, Kagel + others. Dutch text.
author: Barbera van Kooij, Christopher Phillips (editors)
publisher: Witte de With centre for contemporary art, Rotterdam 1998
description: exh. cat. (acconci, barry, cadieux, cardiff, gerz, hill, toebosch + others) nice essays. English, french and spanish.
author: Michael Archer
title: voice over, sound and vision in current art.
publisher: South Bank Centre, London
isbn: 1-85332-170 -2
description: exh. cat. (Dean, Furlong, Douglas, Deller, Gunning, Munoz + others).
author: Ursula Block, Michael Glasmeier (editors)
title: Broken Music, Artists' Recordworks
publisher: DAAD / gelbe Musik Berlin 1989
description: Exhibition was at daad galerie Berlin, Gemeentemuseum Den Haag, Magasin Grenoble. Writings about vinyl by Block, Adorno, Moholy-Nagy, Dubuffet and others. Large and detailed compendium of artists work on (and with) records. English, French & German.
author: Heidi Grundmann (editor)
publisher: TRANSIT Austria 1994.
description:exh. & symposium: "sound installation and media composition in the digital age." - Lucier, Fontana, Neuhaus, Heckert, Schryer, Kroker, Bandt, etc.... German / Eng text.
author: Paul Panhuysen (ed)
title: ECHO the images of sound
publisher: Apollohuis, Eindhoven 1987
description: exh. of sound installations + performances. incl. Julius, Eastley, Fullman, Kosugi, RIckels, Lehrman, et. al. Essays by Hugh Davies. English text.
author: Suzanne Pagé (editor)
title: écouter par les yeux. Objets et environnements sonores
publisher: ARC / Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris 1980.
description: works by many artists, instrument builders, focussed on Fluxus movement. texts by Popper, Block. French text.
author: Helga de la Motte-Haber (ed)
publisher: Akademie der Künste Berlin / Prestel-Verlag 1996
description: Cat. of Sonambiente festival, Berlin. Many artists / writers.
author: Wolfgang Fetz (editor)
title: Audio Art (Kunst in Der Stadt 2) 1998
publisher: Bregenzer Kunstverein, Belruptstr. 1 A-6900 Bregenz, Austria.
description: cat. of festival exhibition 1998 in Bregenz. A good 1/3 of the book is taken up by William Furlong's Audio Arts project. the rest includes texts and project descriptions by or about, Fontana, Courtemanche/Weidenhammer, Sodomka, Berindl, Sherman, Huber, Burkhadt, Grundmann, Moffat, Müller, Patterson, Sha., Smpw, Noetinger.... many more.
author: Strick / Zilczer / Brougher / Wiseman / Mattis
title: Visual Music. Synesthesia in Art and Music Since 1900
publisher: Thames & Hudson, London 2005
description: large, impressive but non-exhaustive survey of film/sound/light/kinetic art & music.
author: schulz / de la Motte-Haber, Minard, Glasmeier, Leitner, Bosshard
title: Resonanzen / Resonances
publisher: Keher Verlag Heidelberg 2002
description: essays on sound art and documentation of works by Bosshard, de Marinis, Julius, Kubisch, Leitner, Oldorp, Osborn, Riches, Roden, Stache, Yui. Text in german and english. includes CD.
author: Dick Raaijmakers, Arjen Mulder and Joke Brouwer (editors), with essays by Elmer Schönberger, Kees Tazelaar, Michael van Hoogenhuyze, Frans Evers, Paul Slangen
title: Dick Raaijmakers, Monografie
publisher: V2 Publishers/NAi 2007
description: Dick Raaijmakers is one of the pioneers of (dutch) electronic music. His work moves into the areas of performance art, sculpture and music-theatre. A very large and complete study of his work with many illustrations. The current version is in Dutch, English version to be published autumn 2008.
author: Janet Cardiff / Miriam Schaub
title: The Walk Book
publisher: Thyssen_Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Vienna 2005
description: A survey of Cardiff's work with audio and video "walks" very nice design. in English. includes CD .
author: wollscheid / bismarck / deufert / labelle / sato
title: Achim Wollscheid Selected Works
publisher: Selektion SB 2004
description: just what it says: selection of sound and light works by wollscheid. texts in English and German.
author: Bernhard Leitner / Detlef B Linke
title: Bernard Leitner Kopfraume / Headscapes
publisher: ZKM / Hatje Cantz Verlag 2003
description: CD/Book with "sculptures" to be listened to on headphones. texts in German and English.
author: Power / Barthelmes / Jarque
title: Jose Antonio Orts
publisher: DAAD Galerie, Berlin 2003
description: Thick catalogue of Orts' sound sculpture. many photos. Spanish and German text, essays translated in english. includes CD.
author: Osterwold / Schmidt
title: Terry Fox works with sound
publisher: Kehrer verlag, Heidelberg 1999.
description: survey of Fox's sound work from 1970-98. Many photos, text in German and English. Includes CD.
author: Alvin Lucier
publisher: MusikTexte (P.O. box 10 24 61, D-50464 Koeln, Germany) 1995
description: Basically this is the book "chambers" (interviews with Douglas Simon) expanded with writings and interviews by Oliveros, Tenney, Duckworth and Wolf - and loads of Lucier's own texts and scores. English and German text.
author: Akio Suzuki, Bernd Schulz
title: "A" Sound Works. Throwing and Following.
publisher: Stadtgalerie Saarbrücken, 1998
description: exh. cat. describing installation performance projects of Akio Suzuki. English and German Text.
author: Max Neuhaus
title: sound works volumes I, II, III
publisher: Cantz Verlag, Ostfildern, Germany. (in US: D.A.P, NYC)
description: writings by and about Max Neuhaus. documentation of projects and drawings. The intention is to produce ten(!) volumes documenting his work.
author: Michael Glasmeier, Douglas Khan,.
title: Christian Marclay
publisher:daadgalerie Berlin / Fri-Art Centre d'Art Contemporain, Fribourg. 1994
description: catalogue covering mostly installation work. german, french, english text.
author: Kurjakovic / Lohse / Barthes
title: Other Rooms, Other Voices Audio works by Artists.
publisher: Memory / Cage Editions Zurich 1999
description: radio project incl. Weiner, Santoro, Opie, Gallarotti, Nashat, Birnbaum, Ruegg, Wilson, Bourgeois, Burki, Sze, Tusek, Acconci. Includes "Listening" by Roland Barthes. German, French, English.
author: Heidi Grundmann (editor)
title: ON THE AIR kunst im öffentlichen datenraum
publisher: TRANSIT Wilheim Greil Str. 1, A-6020 Innsbruck, Austria 1993
description: art in the open dataspace. a document of a symposium on radio art. authors include, Kittler, Whitehead, Sherman, Thorington, Kerckhove, Penny. German / English.
author: Douglas Kahn and Gregory Whitehead (editors)
title: Wireless Imagination. sound radio and the avant-garde
publisher: MIT Press 1992
description: just what it says. includes Frances Dyson on Cage, Mark E Cory on Hörspiel, seminal texts by Artaud, Avraamov and Marinetti.
author: Neil Strauss (editor)
publisher: Semiotext(e) NY 1993
description: coll. of texts on history, theory and practice of radio by for example Schwitters, Brecht, Trotsky, La Monte Young, Schafer, Guattari. and many many more.
author: Daina Augaitis and Dan Lander (editors)
title: Radio Rethink
publisher: Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff, Canada 1994
description: coll of texts on radio/sound art. (inc. Westerkamp, Dyson, Lander, and Kogawa's instructions on building a 1 Watt FM transmitter.)
title: Musicworks - explorations in sound.
publisher: the music gallery, Toronto.
musicworks has been going for years. A (sometimes great) journal reflecting work in (electro) acoustic music, sound ecology, theory. includes CD.
more info at www.musicworks.ca
author: Rasa Smite (ed)
title: Acoustic.Space net audio issue
publisher: Vaga & E-lab, Riga
description: texts on net audio / radio / exchange. many voices. Latvian / English texts.
well, nowhere in particular. Direct from the publishers / museums. Otherwise you might want to try:
In London: ICA Bookshop, The Mall. / Rough Trade, Neals Yard.
In Barcelona: Central bookshop, Macba // Laie CCCB (montalegre) // Laie Caixa Forum (montjuic/placa espanya)
In Berlin: gelbe MUSIK. Schaperstr. 11, 10719 Berlin. tel. **49(0)30-21136-62 (also mail order), Staalplaat, Rosenthaler Straßse 39 10178 Berlin, Walter König Bookshop in Hamburger Bahnhof museum. (also in Köln)
Brussels, Le Bonheur.
For Acoustic Space magazine, contact e-lab directly: email@example.com