EM1010 – Stretched in the Dark

EM 1010 Magnus Alexanderson - front-1

Magnus Alexanderson has mainly worked in the electro-acoustic field. His music has been performed at festivals worldwide often in combination with video projection by visual artist Sachiko Hayashi in their duo MASH. He is also a performing improviser on the electric guitar and electronics, most notably in the group Decision Dream. They released the piece Steamroom Variations on the Canadian label Red Toucan in 2005.

Magnus Alexanderson born January 17th 1961. He studied guitar, bassoon and musical theory in his youth. Studies at the composition class in electronic and computer music at EMS/Royal College Of Music in Stockholm between 1980-82 for Lars-Gunnar Bodin, Rolf Enström, Tamas Ungvary and Jan W Morthenson. Continued studies in composition privately for Lars Sandberg (1982-85) and Miklos Maros (1985).


TITLE Stretched in the Dark
ARTIST Magnus Alexanderson
YEAR 2006
TYPE CD, digipak
PRICE 12 Euro




1. Stretched in the dark, 12:16 min

2. Melting Points, 12:30 min

3. FU, 29:30 min






Kuolleen Musiikin Yhdistys, Finland

The newest Elektronrecords release is by Magnus Alexanderson, who has studied electroacoustic music and computer composition at EMS.
The CD consists of three pieces, widely separated in time. It starts out with the newset track, Stretched in the Dark from 2000 – a song that according to the cover files under musique concrete. I would like to file it under drone music, and obviously it is created with string instruments. The character of the work is very dark, expressive and penetrating, and it has a continous movement. In short it consists of a very beautiful, living sound that should give a lot of enjoyment for drone lovers.

Melting Points from 1997 has a significantly more electronic sound and is according to the cover made with a midi guitar and a sampler. Also this piece has a strong feeling of physically performed music, but the electronic sound makes it a bit thin. The final 30-minutes long FU sound from the start like random chimes without a direction, but develops in an interesting way when supported by deeper and more floating progression. This minimalistic track is very coherent, as opposed to many other electroacoustic compositions.

Stretched in the Dark i definitly worth checking out, mostly because of the first track. This is yet another example of how one can find real gems amongst the academical electroacoustics, that is generally wanted in the industrial scene. At the same time the CD as a whole is a good example of how different the starting points in this genre can be.

John björkman, Kuolleen Musiikin Yhdistys (Finland)



Vital Weekly 525

Magnus Alexanderson – Stretched in the dark
(CD by Elektron)

Elektron is the record company of SEAMS, the Society of Electro-Acoustic Music in Sweden. Their tenth release is by Magnus Alexanderson (1961). He studied guitar, bassoon and musical theory in his youth and later on computer music. Nowadays he works mainly in the electro-acoustic field. There are three pieces here on this release, one from 1991, one from 1997 and the most recent is from 2000, the opening piece. It’s called ‘Stretched In Dark’ (the word ‘the’ mentioned in the title is missing here) and is listed as musique concrete, but it’s wall of the sound drone could easily be listed as ‘amplified electric guitar plays with a chain saw’, as it has the heavy saw sounds of an amplified agricultural tool. The midiguitar is part of the second piece, ‘Melting Points’ (1997) together with a sampler. Similar chainsaw effects are reached here, but it’s a much more ‘serious’ piece of slowly gliding sounds, occasionally interrupted by smaller sounds. The oldest piece is ‘Fu’ (1991), and it’s also the longest piece. It’s for computer-controlled synthesizer and of a much more quieter nature. Bell like sounds open the piece, and over the course of almost thirty minutes these get stretched out and are sometimes visited by the bell sounds. A deeply atmospherical piece that is the highlight of the CD, even when the other tracks are also quite good.

Vital Weekly 525