Worms Can Feel Pain

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sound file:Worms Can Feel Pain (4'20")

The entire basis for this piece resulted from an article in the New York Times from the Tuesday September 11, 1979 edition. There is no real social relevance here, merely a representation of an article and its aural symbolism. Throughout the entire piece, the worm's synapse sound can be heard; scientists are now convinced that this sound is caused by envelope generators controlling white noise with an analog delay and a sequential voltage controlled panning device. When a worm's cerebral ganglion (wormlike brain) is functioning it emits sounds much like a farting bus. Throughout the entire second half of the piece, the worm rhythm section is present. The rhythm section is essential to the worm's basic survival. The enkephalins and beta endorphins which are secreted by the invertabrate causes a herd of worms to form the "south american worm rhythm section", which works the creatures into a frenzy; whereuponithe worms begin to have a wild orgy among the rocks till satiated. In the beginning of the piece we have the "worm dig section", which is showing the worm's painful ascent into man's environment. The final instrumental section is a delicate weaving of sounds of pain and pleasure, which mix together until at moments they are indistinguishable. The vocal section is done by myself and Beth Mastin-Kiefaber. Here we have the text of the article being read in Swedish supplemented by my utterances of pain and pleasure. This type of babbling is symbolic of the information overload which is currently occuring at an alarming rate all over the world. By doing the text in swedish I am working with the actual sounds of the words, since the real meaning of the words is pure scientific information overload. One final note: animals lacking backbones are very prevelant in both man's and the worm's worlds. The human variations emit sounds which are not unlike a whining dog. I would also like to thank Beth for her help on translation and of course special thank to Boris and Frank Gearhead who locked themselves in U.W.E.M.C. in order to help me finish this piece.

Worm Digest - all you ever wanted to know about worms


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Audio Stuff Updated: January 1, 2000