In his book Über Popmusik (2014), Diedrich Diederichsen already emphasized certain irregular sound qualities in his view of the peculiarity of pop music as recorded music. In his latest publication Körperertreffer (2017), he pursues this phenomenon in an even more concentrated manner. He focuses on involuntary and unplanned sounds that create vitality and body presence, as the media production and reproduction apparatus allow, and even generate in a specific and characteristic way.
Now the bodies of the musicians (as well as those of the listener) can be given presence in various ways. But also the body of the music. And that in a well-planned way. For a few years now, in some bass-related music styles such as (Post- or Dirty) Grime, Deep Dubstep, Trap, Future Bass and Drum & Bass, but also the Sound Art, the attempt to create a new physicality through sound can been observed. This via pitching, bass and sub-bass on the one hand, and new sound spaces on the other. Music becomes downright (sound) sculptural. And those who get this sonic hypotyposis in addition to the musicians appear more and more not only in the credits, but also in the promotion: “Mastered and cut by …” is the formula here, which suggests a new musical awareness in which the (in terms of time) the last, post-production steps are suddenly right at the front (in terms of relevance). One could almost speak of signature mastering, insofar as the mastering engineer recognizes her or his work like an artist author.
Anyone who thought that everything in the vinyl medium had already been formulated in terms of sound could give a listen to releases from Overlook, Mumdance, Logos, Klein, Dillon, Raime / Yally or the labels Silent Season, Hemlock, Dom & Roland Productions and Well Rounded Dubs, for example. One can came to the conclusion that this is not the case, rather paths have been taken towards new, quasi-haptic sonic sculptures or sound-designed, kinetic soundscapes, in which, parallel to the strong appreciation of post-production in film, a very clear appreciation of post-production has been taken place in music. It is now necessary to redefine where the music comes from and in which proportions: from the musicians, the music technology (production) or the mastering and vinyl cut (post-production)? Hollywood blockbusters are now made around 80% in post-production. What is happening to the music here? Is new post-produced music emerging on vinyl?