Verity Sharp hears from Berlin-based composer, academic and artist Holly Herndon. Herndon is interested in our complicated relationship with technology, often using the voice to explore the boundaries between the human and the technological.

Her last record, Proto, was created with a choral ensemble and a nascent A.I. ‘baby’ called Spawn which was conceived with her partner Mathew Dryhurst and created by A.I. expert Jules LaPlace. It uses neural networks to process audio and respond to music it ‘hears’. Holly has given Spawn she/her pronouns and sees her as a member of the ensemble. She interrogates some of the ethics around making music with a neural network and where she thinks we are heading to next. Plus we play dance music for lazy people by Beirut trumpet botherer Mazen Kerbaj, choral drone from NYX Choir and Ivor Cutler tries to plug a hole in his head with his teeth.

Produced by Alannah Chance. A Reduced Listening Production for BBC Radio 3


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1 Holly Herndon – Frontier

2 Lyra Pramuk – Tendril

3 Skarbø Skulekorps – Turnamat

4 Mark Vernon – Risør Harbour

5 Mazen Kerbaj – Dance Music for Lazy People

6 Vula Viel – What’s Not Enough About That? (feat. Peter Zummo)

7 Tuareg Women Of The Kel Issekeneren – Tohimo Dance

8 Matmos – Breaking Bread

9 Ivor Cutler – There’s a Hole In My Head

10 Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guèbrou – The Mad Man’s Laughter

11 Paul De Marinis – Odd Evening

12 Holly Herndon – Crawler

13 Holly Herndon – Frontier

14 Holly Herndon – Godmother (feat. Jlin)

15 Holly Herndon – Evening Shades (Live Training)

16 Holly Herndon – Extreme Love (feat. Lily Anna Haynes & Jenna Sutela)

17 Iannis Xenakis – Analogique A Et B

18 Holly Herndon – Birth

19 Holly Herndon – Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt

20 Johann Sebastian Bach – Goldberg Variations, BWV 988: I. Aria

21 Holly Herndon – Eternal

22 The Tsinandali Choir – Makruli

23 Krista Sildoja, Elo Kalda, Uku Sildoja & Raivo Sildojs – Vormsi labajalad

24 Lite Fails – Fire Season

25 Sam Lee – Worthy Wood

26 Handle – Punctured Time

27 Beatrice Dillon – infraordinary (live at Assembly, Somerset House Studios)

28 Shorty Petterstein – Drums In The Typewriter (Woodrow Leafer)

29 Stein Urheim – Brave New World Revisited Again

30 Roberto Musci – Claudia, Wilhelm R And Me

31 Hatis Noit & NYX – Angelus Novus

32 Discord – Out of Reach

33 Margaret Barry – She Moves Through the Fair – Our Wedding Day

34 Coil – The Original Wild Garlic Memory

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