antilogy is tony kemplen's label for his sonic art releases

Eine Kleine Thriftmusik
electroacoustic compositions by Brass Monkey
list of tracks

Brass Monkey makes electro-acoustic sound pieces using a variety of sources. The collection Eine Kleine Thriftmusik is a series of compositions using musical instruments bought in charity shops, car boot sales, and the local ‘Poundland’. Occasionally an instrument made from common household items is also used.
All of the pieces begin with a studio recording of one or more of the instruments, these sounds are then processed and layered in a variety of ways, and assembled into compositions with a range of styles and influences. Sometimes, for example in Siren Song, there is nothing of the original sound remaining to be heard, while at the other extreme, in The Last Toast, the sound is unprocessed apart from simple multi-tracking. Several of the tracks use sound to midi software, most notably Interlude for Finger Piano and Item No. 68314, and in two compositions, Etude aux Chemins de Fer and Jingle Balls a Yamaha WX5 midi wind controller was used to improvise a melodic line.
Short, relatively low bitrate excerpts of some of the tracks can be heard using the links on the left. Accordidrocca is provided in it's entirety.

  1. thumbnail of accordidrocca Accordidrocca mp3
    piano accordion from car boot sale

  2. thumbnail of Plumbing the Depths Plumbing the Depths mp3 excerpt
    homemade sub-contrabass clarinet

  3. thumbnail of Scraping the Barrel Scraping the Barrel
    penny whistles from Poundland

  4. thumbnail of Item No. 68314 Item No. 68314 mp3 excerpt
    bicycle siren from Poundland

  5. thumbnail of Cygneture tune Cygneture tune
    swanee whistle from charity shop

  6. thumbnail of Interlude for finger piano Interlude for finger piano mp3 excerpt
    finger piano from charity shop

  7. thumbnail of Etude aux chemin de fer Etude aux chemin de fer mp3 excerpt
    train sound effect whistle from charity shop

  8. thumbnail of Jingle Balls Jingle Balls mp3 excerpt
    cat bells from Poundland

  9. thumbnail of Jingle Bells Jingle Bells
    electronic greetings cards from Poundland

  10. thumbnail of Siren Song Siren Song mp3 excerpt
    8 tone siren from Poundland

  11. thumbnail of Thirteen recorder pieces Thirteen recorder pieces mp3 excerpt
    various recorders

  12. thumbnail of The last toast The last toast mp3 excerpt
    hunting horn from car boot sale


  1. Accordidrocca mp3 - 3min 25sec - 1.4M
    A palindromic composition reflecting the in and out motion of the piano accordion. The piece opens with the clicking of keys and buttons against a background of the instrument 'breathing'. Gradually the reeds start to sound, and a short 3/4 time accompaniment emerges, soon to break down into the chaotic middle section, during which, at the exact centre of the track, the sound reverses, and like the accordion bellows, returns to it's starting point. [Back to the top]
  2. Plumbing the Depths mp3 excerpt - 30sec - 326K
    A sub contrabass clarinet was constructed using pipes from the local plumber's merchant. A baritone sax mouthpiece was used, and the pitch was altered by adding or subtracting lengths of pipe. At the depths of it's range, the instrument's fundamental dips below the range of human hearing. [Back to the top]
  3. Scraping the Barrel
    Twelve penny whistles from poundland were used to make the source sounds for this track. Eventually the whistles were blown as intended, but before this we hear layered recordings of the whistle being scraped against each other, their plastic mouthpieces rasping across the finger holes of the barrel. When the blown sounds emerge, they sound eerily like owls in the night. [Back to the top]
  4. Item no. 68314 mp3 excerpt - 45sec - 310K
    Item no. 68314 from Poundland is a combined flashing LED and siren designed to be mounted on a bicycle. Here its various sounds are put through sound to midi software and a number of other processes. [Back to the top]
  5. Cygneture tune
    Layered swanee whistle blasts, with added synth overtones generated with sound to midi software. As the piece evolves, sounds made by operating the whistle slide without blowing into the instrument become increasingly prominent. [Back to the top]
  6. Interlude for finger piano mp3 excerpt - 30sec - 218K
    A simple phrase plucked on a crude finger piano is repeated and transformed, in what is probably the most restful of the tracks on Eine Kleine Thriftmusik [Back to the top]
  7. Etude aux chemin de fer mp3 excerpt - 30sec - 215K
    The jazz like opening to this piece came from an improvisation on midi wind controller, over recordings of a wooden train whistle emulator. The ear of faith might make out the rhythms of different trains as the track progresses. [Back to the top]
  8. Jingle Balls mp3 excerpt - 45sec - 302K
    A pack of 20 'jingle balls for cats' from Poundland are the source for this track. From gentle individual tinkling, to vigorous shaking en masse, the sounds play cat and mouse with each other. [Back to the top]
  9. Jingle Bells
    Four musical xmas cards for a pound! Who'd have believed it? The cacophony of all four playing at the same time was converted to midi, and rendered using the jingle-bell and wood block midi patches. Samples of the harsh electronic tones, mangled with a granular synthesiser provide some punctuation. [Back to the top]
  10. Siren Song mp3 excerpt - 60secs - 414K
    The harsh sound of a poundland siren was slowed down before being converted to midi and finally rendered using a choir of electronic voices. [Back to the top]
  11. Thirteen recorder pieces mp3 excerpt - 45secs - 303K
    A quintet of recorders, tenor, treble, descant, sopranino and garklein sopranino each played a simple scale. Layers of ever shortening loops were used to make 13 short pieces which then segue seamlessly into each other as they move further away from recognisable notes. The thirteen pieces of the title was chosen to reflect the thirteen physical pieces which the 5 recorders disassemble into. [Back to the top]
  12. The last toast mp3 excerpt - 30sec - 208K
    A miasma of forlorn farts squeezed out of a hunting horn by a non-brass player mimic or perhaps mock the futile last gasps of the fox hunting folk, as their practice finally becomes illegal. [Back to the top]
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