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Haunted Weather: Music, Silence, and Memory

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  330 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Digital technology has changed the ways in which music is perceived, stored, distributed, mediated and created. The world of music is now a vast and complex jungle, teeming with CDs, MP3s, concerts, clubs, festivals, conferences, exhibitions, installations, websites, software programmes, scenes, ideas and competing theories. In the eye of the storm stands David Toop, shedd ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published October 13th 2005 by Serpent's Tail (first published 2004)
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Apr 27, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anybody interested in ambient or experimental music
Dipping again into this fantastic book about music and sound, and how they are affected by the body and the environment. If that makes it sound dry, it's not: Toop has a beautiful, slightly eerily deadpan prose style, and an extraordinarily wide range of reference. He's been a music journalist and musician for decades, and has also done ethnographic work collecting music and sound. Fantastically wide-ranging - covers everything from the emotional charge of sound memories, to how places shape sou ...more
Joe Richards
Nov 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
'Haunted Weather' serves as something between a travel diary, rich with descriptive examples of fascinating and unique performances, compositions, interviews, observations and memories, and a meditation on the relationships between sound, silence, performer and audience.

A heady subject reach, full of wonder, analysis and reflection, Toop's delivery is nonetheless relatable and involving. It's hard to finish a chapter without stopping to research the composition or performer as they are describe
maxim dore
May 08, 2007 rated it it was amazing
fantastic. changed my whole view of experimental electronic music/ sound art
Thordur Arnarson
Brilliant book. Read it years ago, need to read it again.
Chris Harris
Aug 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Another colletion of essays about the nature of music and, more broadly, the human experience of sound or its absence. Although there's a discography at the back, it's more than a little frustrating, as some of the works discussed are almost impossible to track down as physical recordings (look, I'm old, okay? I like my music in the shape of a physical artefact) but there are enough anecdotes, observations, and narrative detours that it's an entertaining read.
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
No passion. Compare Alex Ross, Evan Eisenberg.
Nov 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: do-not-own
Very informative, and full of nice revelations on the nature of our perception of sounds and their connection to the way we see and remember the world. However, it's far too anecdotical and dwells too much on japanese sound artists which leads to long, adoring, and repetitive paragraphs surrounding a single "untranslatable" japanese concept.
May 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is my all time favourite book on music. David Toop eloquently and mindfully discusses what are, for me, the most interesting aspects of experimental music across countries and time. Several years after I first read it, I still pick it up continuously to read sections at random.
Jul 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Perhaps one of the best books on music I've read, Haunted Weather offers insight into the diverse worlds of digital music, found sounds, soundscapes and improvisation. Toop discusses the way these are interpreted by the mind and body in a sophisticated though not convoluted manner.
May 19, 2008 added it
Horrid cover graphic but, as always with Toop, interesting anecdotes about sound art take priority over pretentious theorizing and its cliches.
Oct 21, 2007 rated it liked it
A bit too anecdotal ultimately. BUMMER.
Feb 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great. Now I have to spend another two weeks searching for out-of-print cd's. I never found more than 5% of my list from Toop's Ocean of Sound. But it's all worth it.
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David Toop (born 5 May 1949) is an English musician, author, and professor and chair of audio culture and improvisation at the London College of Communication. He is a regular contributor to British music magazine The Wire and the British magazine The Face. He was a member of the Flying Lizards