Loscil

biography
Scott Morgan lives in Vancouver, BC where he creates sound-effects for video games and makes music. He took the name Loscil from the Csound compuer program, it is a compound of "loop" and "oscillate." As a student at Simon Fraser University he studied composition; making electro-acoustic music and playing drums in bands. He sent kranky a demo in 2001, and all but one of the tracks on it made it the debut Loscil CD Triple Point. Inspired by a physics textbook, Morgan told Sadness Is In The Sky that "initially I was interested in the idea of trying to represent an abstract, scientific concept in a musical form as a kind of figure or table... I found the language of thermodynamics to be quite evocative, particularly in relation to music." If the pulsing waves of sound on the CD weren't so involving, none of these concepts would be worth notice, of course. As Julianne Shepherd wrote in the Portland Mercury in Dec. 2201; "The titles of the songs essentially describe what the music sounds like; 'Pressure,' for instance, sounds exactly like a group of beakers bubbling with condensation, or fissures in the earth breathing out vapor... ".

Loscil went on tour with Stars of the Lid in Europe and played shows in the Pacific Northwest where he integrated sound and visuals. A single was released on the British Involve label and slowly and surely Loscil gained recognition as North American independent electronica drew away from the forming influences of the Artificial Intelligence compilations and became worthy of notice on its own terms. Eschewing glitch for its own sake or breakbeat promiscuity, Loscil works in real depth of field.

Morgan began work on his second full length release, with each track named after a famous submarine. A good deal of the music used as building blocks on the Submers CD came from sampled and transformed classical music. Morgan told the Loop website in 2003 that "what does get used is usually not recognizable after I have processed it, but that is the source material I tend to work with because I like the depth in timbre of much orchestral music." Depth is a word that gets used a lot in describing Submers, the titular theme of submersion and aquatic imagery tend to appear in a lot of reviews of the album:

    "Despite every track being named after a submarine, the music within is far from being in any way murky, claustrophobic or mechanical; it possesses both crystalline clarity and a slowly undulating, enveloping beauty. Layers of stripped-back notes ebb and flow over rhythms that, in their barely audible sparseness, sound for all the world to be rising from some far-off tonal ocean; a foreground of clicks and crackles billows throughout like sea spray in the wind."
    Dave Stelfox XLR8R Nov. 2002

Scott Morgan worked away on his third album throughout 2003, using real instruments and input from other musicians. With sound sources that ranged from sampled instruments to miscellaneous lo-fi mini-cassette recordings, Morgan generated music on computer by custom programming sequencing and processing designed so that no two performances of the patches would be exactly the same. In turn, Jason Zumpano on fender rhodes piano, Tim Loewen on guitar and Nyla Rany on cello improvised over those electronic sequences. Morgan then edited and mixed the live and premixed sections together. The resulting album, First Narrows, will be out in May 2004.

kranky titles available
Endless Falls
Plume
First Narrows
Submers
Triple Point

external links
Loscil - www.loscil.ca