[ Frank Rothkamm Symphony No.0 ]

In his biography of Richard Wagner, Curt von Westernhagen relates the tale of the sculptor Adolph Kietz. According to him, Wagner insisted Anton Bruckner have a beer while they were looking over Bruckner’s scores. Bruckner declined, citing his recent stay at the health spa at Karlsbad. But Richard insisted that Anton have a drink because it would improve his health: “Nonsense, it is good for you, drink it”. So Richard and Anton got drunk, so drunk in fact that Anton could not remember the next morning which of his symphonies Wagner accepted to be dedicated to him. Never mind what symphony it was, the point is that Bruckner was so drunk that the room and subsequently his score in front of him started to spin around him. Finally, we all have something in common with our geniuses of “Zukunftsmusik” (future music): Overindulence in libations that contain ethanol, a.k.a. drinking alcohol. One more drink for a symphony! It’s clear from all the advances in medical science since that fateful meeting between Wagner and Bruckner that people on drugs usually make a horrible mess. That is why Ernest Hemingway, the esteemed writer and bon-vivant recommended “write drunk, edit sober”. Thanks to the internet and its collection of alternative facts we now know that all of this may be misattributed, false, or made up because everybody was too drunk the next morning to remember anything. What did I just say? Right, mathematics is our saviour. As a number Zero was not conceptualized by the ancient Greeks who did not have a name for zero and did not use a placeholder. The number 0 is the smallest nonnegative integer. In Algebra x/0 is undefined. It has its problems, but Anton Bruckner wrote a symphony No. 0. In 1895, when Bruckner reviewed his symphonies in order to have them published, he declared that a certain symphony of his "does not count". He wrote on the front page "annullirt" (annulled) and replaced the original "Nr. 2" with the symbol "0". He misspelled “annulliert” and hence did not follow Hemingway’s advice because Hemingway was not born yet. By now it should be very clear where all of this is going: I am in possession of the non-alternative, the real Symphony No.0. The one both Wagner and Bruckner heard once they passed out on the booze. It has been re-constructed with all the scientific and computational rigor only the Lodge For Utopian Science can provide. Visit us today at http://lfus.org, classes now forming and available at a special low, low introductory fee. But I won’t bore you with all these “gag me with a spoon” algorithms, named after Al-Khwarizmi, a 9th century Persian mathematician and Muslim. No, I encourage you to put yourself in a state of consciousness where you are far enough out that your ego does not count, so far out that you do not even care to pay your taxes, so far out that you simply listen to the Symphony No.0.


   
Catalog No: FLX86.442
Title: Symphony No.0
Sound Artist: Frank Rothkamm
Visual Artist: Otto Böhler
Holger Rothkamm
Label: Flux Records
Length: 29:34 (1774s)
Composed: 2016
Location: Los Angeles
Instruments: Atari Formula
Roland SC-33
Release Date: 1/31/2017
Format: Digital
File Under: Algorithmic Classical