A method of musical sigils

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A method of musical sigils

Post by kingnine » Tue Feb 13, 2018 12:18 am

I make electronic music. I was thinking of a method of making musical sigils, and came up with this. It's inspired by the methods of serialism, even though I don't really like serialism. This is cause its methods work incredibly well for sigils. Serialism treats music as a series of tone rows, which represent pitches as numbers and manipulate the numbers in various ways to make melody and harmony. All that's needed to turn an intent into tone rows is a way to turn your intent into a series of numbers. So I decided to count the alphabet in modulos.

Modulos count up to a certain number before resetting back to 0. Technically, it's the remainder you would get if you divide the number in question by the modulo base, so for example 17 mod 9 is 8, because 17/9 is 1 with a remainder of 8. But for our purposes it's easier to think of modulos as being repeating number lines, so counting in mod 9 would be 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8, then back to 0 again, and so on.

By counting the alphabet in modulos, you can turn words into tone rows. Mod 9 gives you numbers from 0-8, which can represent the major or minor scale (eg white notes on the piano starting on C or A). Mod 13 gives numbers from 0-12, which can represent the chromatic scale (all the notes on the piano). 0s then count as unisons.

Once you turn your intent into a string of numbers, it's usually relatively long. It's too long to be a memorable melody. So, the solution I prefer is to use it as harmony. Chop it up into 3 or 4 or 5 number sequences, and that way you get through the tone rows faster by simply playing multiple tones at once.

This leaves us still needing a melody, though, preferably one that's shorter than the harmonies since it'll only be one note at a time. I use an easy method - subtract the adjacent numbers from the harmony tone row to make a melody tone row. So, for example, 425633 would become 210, or (4-2),(6-5),(3-3). Then you can either use this as a normal tone row, with 0 meaning repeating a note, or as a series of intervals. It's artistic and also chaos magick, so it's ultimately up to you.

An Example
I used mod 9 to represent a C major scale.

which makes the harmony
then I subtracted the pairs of harmony numbers to make the melody
which becomes

The result: https://www.dropbox.com/s/pnz8zn79hod7f ... l.mp3?dl=0
Last edited by kingnine on Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Cam Revillot
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Re: A method of musical sigils

Post by Cam Revillot » Tue Feb 13, 2018 4:21 am

That's awesome! The method I use is totally watered down and I've been looking to learn more. Thanks!

Here's a relevant pic I found a long time ago but don't really understand:

Check out Chaos Tarot for my Sigil Generator and other tools and ideas for C :*: M
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Re: A method of musical sigils

Post by Micr0cosM » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:54 pm

That's amazing.

I will have tho re read it a few times till I fully understand the process, but the piece of music it generated is beautiful.

Good work.
“Science is a way of talking about the universe in words that bind it to a common reality.
Magic is a method of talking to the universe in words that it cannot ignore.
The two are rarely compatible.”
― Neil Gaiman, The Books of Magic
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Re: A method of musical sigils

Post by Vap0rWar3 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 5:04 pm

I have no idea what you just said, but its amazing none the less. The output of that was fantastic.
- Vap0rWar3
To go in the dark with a light is to know the light.
To know the dark, go dark. Go without sight,
And find that the dark, too, blooms and sings,
And is traveled by dark feet and dark wings

To Know the Dark | by Wendell Berry
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Re: A method of musical sigils

Post by abitungraceful » Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:43 pm

I agree with the last comments... no clue what you're talking about but the result is beautiful.
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