Phil Durrant

Recorded in the Great Hall, Goldsmiths’ College, London, on February 9th 2010

Computer Generated Music

Born near London in 1957, Phil Durrant is an improviser/composer/sound artist who devises his own virtual performance instruments using Reaktor. As a violinist (and member of the Butcher/Russell/Durrant trio), he was one of the key exponents of the “group voice approach” style of improvised music In the late 90s, his trio with Radu Malfatti and Thomas Lehn represented a shift to a more “reductionist” approach to group improvisation.

His exploration in the use of live electronics to expand the timbre of the violin, has evolved into the creation and building of self- made virtual instruments using Reaktor . His live sampling/treatments duo with John Butcher and his work with MIMEO have seen Durrant move away from the use of hardware electronics to the use of software virtual instruments and effects in live situations. He is keen to transfer the flexibility of playing an acoustic instrument, into his laptop performances, and this is the subject of his PhD research.

Durrant currently performs regularly with the acoustic/electronic group Trio Sowari (with Bertrand Denzler and Burkhard Beins). He has also been collaborating and composing site-specific music for a wide variety of choreographers, including Maxine Doyle, Susanne Thomas, and Gill Clarke.

Interview with David Toop

Recording Notes

The recording was made of Phil playing live, directly from a PA loudspeaker just before a performance for the Interlace series of improvised music concerts at the Great Hall, Goldsmiths, organised by Sebastian Lexer. The wax cylinder was played back on an Edison phonograph during a trio performance by Phil, David Toop and myself.