The latest project from Sheffield based artist and electronic musician Mark Fell, Multistability is primarily an exploration of erratic and non-regular rhythmic patterns. Drawing equally from his work with snd and his many solo projects Fell’s most recent work promotes a minimal complexity; combining meticulous synthetic chordal layering with convoluted, chaotic yet fundamentally engaging temporal structures.
In the field of Gestalt psychology the term ‘multistability’ refers to the effect where one is unable to perceive a single stable object within complex or ambiguous patterns. A famous example is the Necker cube – a wire frame with no depth cues that oscillates between front back orientations. The term is also found in systems theory where it describes a condition that is neither stable nor instable, where a system switches between different states. Fell takes these as a starting point for his project, developing compositional structures and strategies that transform and transcend the familiar; structures that refuse to accept parental advice.
Split into two halves the album contains two versions of itself. Using what Fell describes as ‘extremely basic’ pattern generating systems, passages reappear throughout... yet these are applied and manoeuvred into parallel versions of themselves – often different sounds and parameters are explored producing no singular or resolved arrangement.
In his recent works Fell’s process has been influenced by his collaborative encounters with friend and fellow musician Yasunao Tone - particularly Tone’s approach to ideas concerning intentionality and time within the context of musical practices. In Fell’s work, deliberate actions are layered, and distorted; manipulated to produce unforeseen and often extraordinary aesthetic outcomes... documented here in the form of 17 related pieces.
Above all Multistablity should be understood in light of Fell’s claim that “Music is a technology for constructing an experience of time”. Here, in musical form, Fell aims to disrupt familiar temporal divisions and structures; and investigate non-repetitive musical process.