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Published: 29 July 2013

By Andy Ross

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The Nature of Music (cont.)

This weekend we listened to the documentary from the Channel 4 with Bjork and David Attenborough.  Did you?

The piece is all about the relationship between music, nature and technology as related by Bjork and Sir David.. As a closet mathematician the idea of order underpinning nature appeals to me immensely, so this programme was a definite must-see. Thanks to our readers who sent in reminders!

I loved the idea that Bjork is trying to help people understand our world in new ways through technology. Remember the CD ROM of Laurie Anderson's Puppet Motel which explored rooms and memory, using music to aid those discoveries? Or Peter Gabriel's Xplora 1 from Secret World which allowed us to play instruments and watch clips from recording sessions. Bjork's Biophilia tour which looks at the amazing world we live in and explores it through music comes complete with new instruments (I love the gravity harp), and a whole suite of apps which help us write our own music.

The idea that we can learn music in other ways than western notation, amazing though that system is, is fascinating. I love this idea of using technology to explore sound and music, and the notion that music is all around us in a system that the ancient Greeks recognised as the music of the spheres.

There is so much to find out and get excited about in this programme. Let's hope that there will be more to come!