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Configuring the sound-box 1965-1972

Dockwray, R and Moore, AF (2010) Configuring the sound-box 1965-1972 Popular Music, 29 (2). 181 - 197. ISSN 0261-1430

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Abstract

When a stereophonic track is heard through headphones or over loudspeakers, the image of a virtual performance is created in the mind. This virtual performance, which exists exclusively on the record, can be conceptualised in terms of the ‘sound-box’ (Moore 1993), a four-dimensional virtual space within which sounds can be located through: lateral placement within the stereo field; foreground and background placement due to volume and distortion; height according to sound vibration frequency; and time. From the mid-1960s, the increasing shift from mono to stereo meant that producers and engineers had to contend with the notion and potential of a song’s sonic arrangement or mix, resulting in a disparity of sonic placement and a diverse range of sound-box configurations. By 1972, a normative positioning of sound sources within the sound-box was established, which we term the ‘diagonal mix’. This article focuses on the consolidation of this norm by means of a ‘taxonomy of mixes’ and the utilisation of visual representations which detail the sound-box configurations of a variety of pop/rock, easy listening and psychedelic tracks from 1966 to 1972.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an electronic version of an article published asDockwray R, Moore AF (2010). Configuring the sound-box 1965-1972. Popular Music 29(2):181-197. Available online at: http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayIssue?iid=7808069
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Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Human Sciences > School of Arts > Music
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2012 12:57
Last Modified: 23 Sep 2013 19:20
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/355450

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