'Underneath and Sonder' is an album-length composition by experimental performer-composer Sarah Belle Reid [bio & press photos]. Recorded in a single take but then meticulously edited over many months, the pfMENTUM release explores a teetering relationship between chaos and control, breath and electricity, and inner and outer narratives. The album features Sarah Belle Reid as the solo performer, playing a trumpet that is electronically augmented using a device called MIGSI (Minimally Invasive Gesture Sensing Interface). Reid was inspired to create MIGSI as a way of integrating her passion for technology, trumpet, and improvisation in 2014, and since then has developed a prolific performance and compositional practice on the instrument. More information and videos on MIGSI can be found here.
The album is divided loosely into two halves. The first four tracks ('Underneath I–IV') explore intimate, internal gestures—half-voiced tones on the trumpet, amplified breath, clicks, pops, and metal tubes, gradually building from a distant shimmer to an intense swirling and collision of sounds. The second half of the album ('Sonder I–V') builds upon this sonic universe with the introduction of chaotic electronic bursts and rumbles, representative of the vastly intricate, complex, sublime, fragile, and powerful universe around (and within) us. At the heart of this work is finding and pushing personal limits of control, listening, and imagination—a vulnerable, determined, curious place to be.
Both the synthesized electronics and the processed effects are performed using the MIGSI Software Application, designed by Ryan Gaston and Sarah Belle Reid.
‘Underneath and Sonder’ is released by pfMENTUM, Oct. 18, 2019.
Visuals by Vicente Manzano