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Soundscape by Peter Adjaye for ‘A Countervailing Theory’ by Toyin Ojih Odotula.

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The new soundscape composition ‘Ceremonies Within’ created in an artistic collaboration with the mighty Toyin Ojih Odutola, for her expansive exhibition of 40 new works together to make an immersive installation in the Curve Gallery at the Barbican Centre, London. Open now until 31st January 2021. 


‘Ceremonies Within’ has been released on limited edition vinyl only edition on my record label Music for Architecture records in partnership with the Vinyl Factory, on the 18th September 2020 and is available to buy now


Front and back cover image ‘Summons; To Witness Ones Own’ 2020, courtesy of Toyin Ojih Odutola and Jack Shainman Gallery. 


The vinyl is also be available in the Barbican shop. The exhibition is free to visit but you must book a time slot online prior to your visit.


Ⅰ Breath of the Spirits Ⅱ Stages of Growth of Consciousness Ⅲ Essence of Material Forms Movement


Ⅳ Point of Infinity Ⅴ Seeds of Understanding Ⅵ Change of Reality


Ⅶ Resistance & Authority Ⅷ Eyes that See Ⅸ Endless Eternity


Peter Adjaye has composed a new and totally immersive soundscape, Ceremonies Within, in response to the first-ever UK exhibition at the Barbicans Curve Gallery, by Nigerian-American artist Toyin Ojih Odutola.

A Countervailing Theory is Toyin’s epic cycle of new work that explores an imagined ancient myth that reveals the story of an ancient civilisation in central Nigeria dominated by female rulers, challenging preconceived notions of history, culture, gender, sexuality, race, the natural environment and more.


For the Barbican exhibition, the concept of the 12 channel sound installation, Ceremonies Within, is the authentic combination of ancient African instrumentation with modern contemporary synths and strings. The nature of this takes its form from multiple percussive sounds and acoustic drums right through to wooden flutes and choral passages. An important aspect of the sound installation is to allow the multitude of sounds to ‘bleed’ into each other as an organic movement in the space. This is to emphasis the story like cinematic quality of the paintings, as different pages of a book or scenes in a film, with rhythmic passages.


The First Movement of Ceremonies Within describes a new landscape and the materials within it, using sounds such as stones, rocks, wind, water, reeds, birds, Choral sounds, Synth effects and Thumb piano.

The Second Movement is more percussive and features different layers of bass frequency, as well as layers of Synth, Strings and effects. There is West African instrumentation, such as Ogene, thumb bells and Clay pot, Ekwe & Igba drums, as well as the Oja wooden flute, musical bow, Okpola wood block, Udu drum, Calabash rattle and the Pluriarc African harp.

The Third Movement consists of further layers of Synth and Keyboards sounds interspersed with Orchestral passages that finally lead to a minimalist Piano motif with intermittent percussions of Talking drums, Ankle bells, Shakere, Hunting horns and Gongs throughout.

Released on Music for Architecture Records / The Vinyl Factory 18th September 2020


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