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Prayer 2: fill me with belief

from Seven Prayers for Stephen Chilton: Requiem [album] by John Harvey



The melodic line is constructed of micro samples taken from a low-resolution recording of the spoken source text (below). The recording was, first, slowed down considerably. Then, melodic and non-tonal material was sampled, extracted, edited, reversed, superimposed, and harmonically enhanced, and the whole, finally, looped. The loop was afterwards processed through delay, harmonic, and reverberation modulators to generate a succession of extended and imbricated echoes. Two versions of loop run in parallel but out of synchronisation until the close to the end, when the raw and unmodified loop is heard, finally. A bass-drone, constructed from a slowed-down recording of radiophonic white noise with the mid to upper frequencies extracted, is heard throughout most of the composition.

Source Text
Lord, bless me; guide me; fill me with belief; free me of my anxiety. And, help me to be more present for the next existence to which you are calling me, with a greater awareness that I am not giving in but that I am following and choosing a way of life that will ultimately lead to a union with you (through prayer, through art, and through my being with others). Lord, watch over me and bring me into your earthly paradise; the paradise, I believe, is inspired by the Holy Spirit.

Lord, you made me like this for a reason. May I follow the right path and fulfil the life you have created within me from the start.

Source Reference
Stephen Chilton [diary] April 17, 2010.


from Seven Prayers for Stephen Chilton: Requiem [album], released November 2, 2021


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John Harvey Ceredigion, UK

I’m a practitioner and historian of sound art and visual art, and Emeritus Professor of Art at the School of Art, Aberystwyth University, UK. My research field is the sonic and visual culture of religion. I explore the sonic articulations of the Christian religion by engaging visual, textual, and audible sources, theological and cultural ideas, and systemic and audiovisualogical processes. ... more

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