Cthulhu for String Trio

Downloadable Score: Cthulhu_FullScore_Deniz_Caglarcan

Program Note

The title of the piece comes from famous American writer H.P. Lovecraft, who is an influential figure on horror fiction writings, and his book of “The Call of Cthulhu”. Cthulhu is an old and gigantic entity, who is worshipped by cultists, lives under the water and waits for the right time to reveal itself. The sonic world of the music is related to this mysterious and silent waiting of the unknown future. Furthermore, the tension of the waiting never releases. Soundworld of the music is representative of the traditional electro-acoustic music world. The main theme at the beginning is built by considering ADSR (Attack, decay, sustain and release) envelope of the sound and its components of morphological structure find places to develop through the music. Three instruments are creating one meta-instrument which has unnatural tape music kind of envelope. Chords in the music come from FM (frequency modulation) synthesis technique in electronic music. Therefore, string trio sounds as a whole and these chords sound are non-existent in the natural world as like the world Cthulhu lives. The mystery under the water is complementary to this world. Listening eyes closed is highly suggested to enhance the listening experience of this artificial sonic world.

Compositional Process

Cthulhu is for string trio (violin, viola, and cello). Three instruments are creating one meta-instrument which has unnatural tape music kind of an envelope. The first three bars of music are the main theme of the music. The rest of the music comes from the main theme which is the developments of adsr in the first motive. The attack is the first bar, decay is the second bar and release is the third bar of the music. Each has their individual space through the music. There are also chords in the music which are in fact FM chords. I used Open Music and Max to generate frequency modulator chords which can be seen below. This helps to produce the electronic music sound world with string trio instruments.

Open Music Patch for FM

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