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What Is the Worth of Pre-DSP Traditional” Production Values in the Contemporary Manipulation-Oriented Context?

Moorefield’s “illusion of reality” was focused on the perception of authenticity in recordings, something that often continues to concern music producers. Editing techniques have increasingly been applied to move beyond this mimetic reproduction and “re-perform” musical elements, and furthermore, DSP commonly offers such extensive manipulation possibilities that all identifiable components of authenticity might be masked, even subverted, offering “virtual timbres” and revised sonic meaning. Here, editing and processing are considered along with their aesthetic and technical implications, placed in a historical perspective and augmented through the synthesis of contributions from a number of professional producers. Several perspectives are presented, and their tensions considered. The fluxive nature of authenticity will be further revealed in the trajectory toward the “reality of illusion.”


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