As part of the most recent Cryptic programme, composer Jules Rawlinson composed and performed a new live score to archival footage from pioneering Scottish scientific filmmaker Eric Lucey and in an examination of speed, motion and scale. Creating a score that accompanies effectively to all three screens of alternate rotating archival footage is the task at hand and one Rawlinson achieves, with an industrial drone and discord that drills through you as you tune into the hypnotic footage.

Cryptic Nights continues its tenth anniversary year with an audiovisual performance that explores tempos, pace, motion and scale in film and sound. Interval and Instance is one project that sees composer Jules Rawlinson add live sound design to archival material from Eric Lucey, using extensive layering, time-stretching and compression, pitch-shifting, physical modelling and frequency. The music composed along with the design highlights the visual elements of the films which feature cells dividing and crystals forming, insect and animal behaviour, human motion and the fast-paced physicality of car movement in Edinburgh.

Dr Jules Rawlinson designs sounds, visuals and interactions, and is Programme Director for MSc. Design and Digital Media. He graduated from the University of Edinburgh’s MSc Sound Design programme with Distinction in 2006, and was awarded a PhD in Composition by the University of Edinburgh in 2011. He studied Combined Arts at Sunderland University, and was a founder at Civic, one of Scotland’s leading digital agencies. This is not the first time he has worked with Cryptic Nights, as he was selected by Creative Scotland for the Made in Scotland strand of the festival in 2015, after a Cryptic event at the CCA.

Perhaps referencing and certainly reminding me of the Philip Glass’ work when it came to the Qatsi film trilogy, evocative and complimentary of the visual. Also perhaps appealing to fans of musical talent, Tim Hecker, this experience combines experimentation, entrancing discordant sound and alternation in tempo and volume, which has varying effects on the audience. Immersive live AV events like this can be affecting, emotive, atmospheric, and yet also create a collective feeling amongst. The music offset the visuals of the insects, the drones often creating a sound we are all too familiar with, as we see fleas dropping to the ground, or bees embracing flight. The textural feeling to this sonic and visual design, along with the tri-screen offering allows you to get lost in your senses, considering many scientific miracles, examining the wonders of life.

Cryptic is the internationally-renowned Glasgow-based producing house which this year, celebrates 25 years of ‘ravishing the senses’. Once again, they have collaborated with Rawlinson to produce an emotive and sensory evening. Events such as this raises my anticipation of their Sonica festival.

Photo of Jules Rawlinson courtesy of Margaret Clift