Bill Viola, 'The Talking Drum' Highly Limited, Signed Vinyl Edition


The previously unreleased recordings on The Talking Drum are manifestations of Viola’s work with physical presence in the form of sonic artworks. These are a logical development following from his early experiments with audio. 

Featuring three early sound compositions from the iconic artist, this limited edition record has been created as part of Bill Viola's site-specific installation of the same name presented by Blain|Southern and The Vinyl Factory at Brewer Street Car Park until 7 Nov 2015.

Concurrent to his formative work with video during his time as an undergraduate at Syracuse University (1969-73), Viola was involved in creating multiple sound installations and performances. After graduation, Viola was part of the group that became Composers Inside Electronics, which was the team that toured and performed David Tudor’s highly influential Rainforest IV. This period allowed for the continued exploration of the manipulation of the physical sound waves themselves through the addition of electronic playback and modulation.

The Talking Drum showcases Viola's experimental Dry Pool Sounding recordings from the late '70s, which have been restored by the artist's studio and are now pressed onto vinyl and housed in bespoke sleeve with archive photography.

Vinyl tracklisting:

Side A

The Talking Drum, 1979 (22:56)

(For Herman Heins) Performance, 1982

Bass Drum, temple gong, pre-recorded sound, and electronics

Performed by Bill Viola

Side B

Hornpipes, 1979-82 (18:11)

PVC pipes, voice

Performed by Ralph Jones, Bill Viola, Yoshi Wada

Pulses (Duomo Bells), 1982 (4:10)

Metronome, pre-recorded sound, and electronics

Performed by Bill Viola



Pressed on 180-gram heavyweight vinyl

Housed in bespoke Colorplan outer and inner sleeves

Featuring original archive photography 

Essay by Astra Price, Cal Institure of Arts

Reproductions of original program notes & invitation from 1979 Composers Inside Electronics performance 

Limited to 100 copies worldwide

Hand signed and numbered by Bill Viola

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