We are best known as long-running rave duo Itch-E & Scratch-E, but have collaborated under a number of aliases over the years, including the ambient moniker, Screensaver. Since Itch-E & Scratch-E was put on the backburner around 2010 (its flame is never quite extinguished), we have pursued solo careers, and so rather than dust off Screensaver for this track, it made more sense for us to go under our own names. We will continue to collaborate from time to time as long as Paul lives within walking distance of a pub.
We wanted to write a piece using the call of the Currawong, one of our favourite birds. We combined this with other sounds, massively time stretched and detuned, but the Curranwong remained the 'hero' or 'diva' of the track. We stripped the birdsong down to just a few tendrils of sound, and these very pure notes punctuate the piece at regular intervals. Although the sounds is very stripped back, it's still recognisably a bird – it has that eerie quality. Also featured in the track, heavily detuned and time stretched, are various sound effects selected for their squeaky and reverberative quality, such as sneakers on a basketball court and a person yelling 'hello!' at a distant cliff. We didn't do the track in real time: we laid down the sound effects and field recordings, added an effect we both liked, then overlaid them visually on the sequencer to approximate a long form structure of about 33 minutes.
Deep listening is a form of listening that is blank, unstructured, synchretic and purpose-free. You can move around and do things. it's doesn't have your primary focus. It affects your mood from the side, relaxing and sharpening your awareness. You can study, write, or do the dishes. Musicians write a lot of purpose-built music just to stay alive, so this is a refreshing change.