Organ For the Senses

Organ For the Senses

October 15, 2017
/ / /

Organ For the Senses


high quality vinyl pressing from Marginal Frequency, original artwork by Marina Grize and Kate Clark. Limited to 300 units.

Secular Reason (10:39)
by Michael Pisaro (2016)
Organist: Justin Murphy-Mancini

An Inside-out Map of the Spreckels Organ Pavilion (09:48)
by Samuel Dunscombe (2016)
Organist: Justin Murphy-Mancini

Face South Toward the Storm (12:03)
by Steven Andrew Flato (2016)
Organist: Jared C. Jacobsen

Artificial Horizons (07:23)
by Celeste Oram, Wen Liu, Johannes Regnier
Organist: Jared C. Jacobsen
Vocalist: Mary Glen Fredrick

Creative Direction: Kate Clark
Music Direction and Concert Recording: Samuel Dunscombe
Organ Curator: Dale Sorensen
Audio Production: Nick Lesley

Album Design: Marina Grize
Drawing: Kate Clark

Production Support:
Max Nanis
Ross Porter
Spreckels Organ Society

Mixing Engineer: Samuel Dunscombe
Mastering Engineer: Alan F. Jones

When it was installed in 1915, the Spreckels Organ was the avant garde of public concert space. It was commissioned as a centerpiece to the California-Panama exposition, which both celebrated the newly completed Panama Canal and welcomed the new wave of merchant and tourist traffic that the canal was about to bring to early 20th century San Diego. 100 years on, the Spreckels Organ is still an instrument capable of achieving its core goal of evoking feelings of great excitement and awe for those lucky enough to see and hear it in action.  It is also an instrument capable of creating an astonishingly powerful array of new and exciting sounds, a territory that currently remains largely unexplored, and a territory that expands as the organ itself continues to grow in physical size (a recent upgrade now sees this instrument with over 5,000 individual pipes).

In 2016, San Diego’s Parkeology director Kate Clark and composer Samuel Dunscombe began brainstorming as to how this massive instrument’s potential might be further uncovered, planning a concert that would highlight qualities that hadn’t been explored. These discussions resulted in the Parkeology event, Organ For the Senses, sonically archived here. Local and regional experimental composers were invited to develop works with the aim to explore all acoustic and physical aspects of the organto shine a light on the old to reveal something new.  Michael Pisaro’s “Secular Reason” takes as its mission to reveal the full dynamic and timbral range of the instrument’s 5,017 pipes – from ground rattling full-spectrum fortissimi to the extreme delicacy of a single flute stop – while Dunscombe’s work “An Inside-Out Map of the Spreckels Organ” aims to reveal the deepest inner working of the instrument by taking pan-perspectival field recordings from deep within its bowels. Steve Flato’s “Face South Toward the Storm,” which draws inspiration from the 100 years of recurrent weather patterns an outdoor instrument such as this must inevitably face, speaks to the organ’s endurance as a physical structure, augmenting the organ’s acoustic sound with live electronics to create a rich fog.  And “Artificial Horizons” (Liu, Oram, Regnier) zooms out to show us the organs place within the larger space of Balboa Park, with a particular emphasis on the flight path that runs directly above it.

releases October 31, 2017
all music by Dunscombe, Flato, Liu, Oram, Pisaro, and Regnier

Dedicated to Craig Johnson

Secular Reason (excerpt)

An Inside-out Map Of the Spreckels Organ Pavilion (excerpt)

Face South Toward the Storm (excerpt)

Artificial Horizons (excerpt)

$20.00 (post paid in the US)

$31.00 (post paid North America)

$35.00 (post paid International)


Orders within the US:

Orders to Canada/Mexico:

International Orders:

Comments are closed.