Allotropy is a series of musical vignettes written for the ensemble Bald Uakari, it is also a mixed media film piece created with visual artist Jon Denton. The aim of allotropy is to create a musical and visual life cycle. This cycle may pertain to that of a factory, a human body, an automobile, the water cycle, etc.

This piece was conceived as a performance piece for 8 musicians and video. The recorded version of this piece is far different. It features much of the same notated material but contains several modifications. Several passages of the original composition have been omitted or severely altered. This omission comes from an extensive “recycling” process completed with producer Drew Atz (aka Jay Moth).

The video by Jon Denton was produced using paint, household objects, glass, and plant matter. The organic nature of both the musical composition and the visual element has been severely suppressed by the aggressive influence of technology. In this way, allotropy can act as a stand-in for Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), but I prefer the more science fiction-oriented cyborg as a closer analogue for allotropy. (A colorful space planet may be closer to the sounds and visuals present, rather than a suburban dinner table.)

Maybe one day, this vast landscape we perceive may become said sci-fi planet, but we have already allowed technology to greatly change our daily vignettes and attitudes. Big data, government surveillance, and the neglect of the physical world have all been created in part by technology, but so have vaccines, driverless cars, and space ships. Nonetheless, we live, and we must exist and resist.

You might not enjoy this. All things must end to make room for the recycled new.

Thank you for spending some time with us, truly.

Greg McRae

Special thanks to Drew Atz, Jon Denton, Neil Leonard, Tony Tirador, Tom Walsh, Charlie Feig, Greg Lynch, Cabot Metz, Gitai Vinshtok, Paul LiBassi, David Sinagoga for making this happen, and to Anh, Mum, Dad, and Charlie for the emotional support.