“Phonautogram is a work of consummate craftsmanship, as detailed and delicate as an old fashioned timepiece.” [The Wire]
The third Winter North Atlantic album, ‘Phonautogram’, was released on the Alt.Vinyl label in October 2013.
The entirely instrumental collection of acoustic and electronic textures was performed by a live 6-piece ensemble for an album launch at the Sage Gateshead venue.
The album includes contributions from Simon Canaway (bass) and Ged Robinson (vibraphone, drums), and was mastered by Patrick Klem. The cover design was produced by Supanaught, and the artwork features “Phonautogram Test Piece, Sound of the Big Bang” (2010, soot on paper) by Ander Mikalson.
Leon Scott’s phonoautograph was the first sound-recording device. Predating Edison’s phonograph, it turns sounds into images, producing intricate, smoky drawings – but offering no means of playback. Using the original 1850s patent manuscripts, Ander Mikalson built a functioning phonautograph and recorded the sound of the Big Bang (as rendered by astronomer Mark Whittle). Mikalson’s resulting series of images is therefore a record of the first sound, recorded by the first sound-recording device. The cover image was the first phonautogram in the set.