A spiral trajectory was plotted across the island, from the wet edge of the coastline, across snowy November plots and inwards to the quiet centre of Parc Mont-Royal. Twenty-five sites were selected along a volute path sectioning the island into smaller and smaller segments.
Each mark of the pin on the map revealed its own ragged circle of terrain: a distinct amalgam of surface textures and weather conditions. A one-minute recording was executed at each site by moving a stylus across the chosen locations. A path was drawn across hard-packed snow, slick asphalt, spalling concrete, heavy mud, tidy brickwork, glassy ice and brittle leaves.
The rough-hewn, but sensitive, all-terrain stylus was built out of landscaping tools, plumbing parts and poplar lumber. The balsa-wood needle was shaped and mounted in an anti-shock chassis. The needle was fitted with a pair of contact microphones then jacked into the recorder.
The resulting twenty-five tracks have been lightly edited for this release. There is no post-processing, other than the ears of the artist, the mastering engineer and the engineer who cut the dub-plate, all who adjusted the equalization and final levels.
Montréal Phonographe becomes a kind of map, resisting the shifts of scale between physical observation and cartographic notation. Any attempt to navigate with this map demands that one stops and listens while every curve, crack and furrow are revisited once more, in turn.
Recorded In Stereo By DOUGLAS MOFFAT
Now Available On 180 gram Heavy Weight White Vinyl.
Co-released by THE DIM COAST And ORAL
With A Special Text By DANIEL CANTY
MASTERING BY JAMES PLOTKIN
LACQUERS BY CHICAGO MASTERING SERVICE
PLATING BY MASTERCRAFT
PRESSED BY RIP_V
PHOTOGRAPHY BY MEREDITH CARRUTHERS
DESIGN by BLACK SHEEP DESIGN
© 2019 Douglas Moffat