CIA “The Sound” Feb 12th
Laurier Music Composers (CIA)/Laurier Music Composers (CIA)

CIA “The Sound” Feb 12th

This week was another exciting week for your hosts, James and James.  We were able to get our hands on another “bootleg” CD of a past Student Composer’s Concert back from 2010.  There were some familiar names on the CD, but for the most part it was all fresh material for The Sound.  Back in the day, the Student Composer Concerts were more than just compositions; they also featured improvisations from both FIRE and ICE improv groups.  The CD is 9 tracks long, and features two improvised pieces by FIRE.  But before we played the music of the concert, we talked about the previous, more recent Student Composer Concert that took place last Wednesday.  There was a ton of variety on this concert, which consisted of 13 pieces.  There was piano solos, sound installations, and much more.  Anyways, here is a track listing that was played today, all of which were debuted in 2010:

Small FIRE – Small FIRE 1

Daniel Turner – Ode to a Bullfrog

Erik Scheele – Sarabande

Ivana Jokic – GAIA I. Fire

Amanda Lowry – Deep Thought

Narim Kim – On Uncompromisable Vanity

Small FIRE – Small FIRE 2

Esther Wheaton – Hundred Metre Butterfly

Matt Donnelly – Journey with the Outsiders


There are no upcoming concerts this week.



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CIA “The Sound” Jan. 29th
Shows/Laurier Music Composers (CIA)

CIA “The Sound” Jan. 29th

This week the CIA played an hour long piece by Manuel Gottsching, titled E2-E4.  The piece is very minimalist, and shows off Manuel’s guitar skills.  The constant driving pulse of the piece is very similar to Music for 18 Musicians by Steve Reich.  The reason why we played such a piece is because we wanted to give the listener a very ambient feel for a long duration of time, which is something that is not often heard on the radio.  Its meditative repetitiveness puts listeners in a trance while Gottsching rips guitar solos.

This past Friday there was a NUMUS Mix Series concert that featured Linsey Wellman, an improv alto saxophone player.  Your hosts, James and James attended this concert, and it was well worth the price of the admission ticket.  Wellman played numerous solo improvisations while using a technique called “circular breathing”.  It was really quite impressive, he went upwards of 10 minutes straight without pausing to take a breath.  If you got the opportunity to seem him in the future, I highly recommend it.  That evening also featured this year’s winner of the NUMUS Student Improviser contest Jasmine Michel.  Michel is a 5th year WLU student that studies the violin.  She did a superb job that evening, and was apart of Wellman’s first act.  The duo played three improvisations total.  Michel showed off her talents, proving to the audience that she deserved the first place selection.

Keep your eyes peeled and ears open for this weekend, Jessica Kun and the WLU Wind Orchestra will be having their 3rd concert of the year this Saturday.  Further details will be below.



WLU Wind Orchestra

8 pm, Feb. 4th, 2017

General admission – $15
Seniors/Non-Laurier students – $7
Laurier and high school students – FREE*

Theatre Auditorium



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CIA “The Sound” Jan. 22, 2017

Hello golden hawks, here is a recap of this weeks episode of the CIA Radio Show The Sound, brought to you by Radio Laurier.

This weeks show featured two Laurier composers, Drew Hewitt and a recent grad, Michael Paolucci.  We listened to three of Drew’s pieces, titled Chestnut Irises, The Nest I Used to Know, and Industrial Obama.  Drew is a fourth year composition student who plays the guitar and writes beautiful music.  Each of Drew’s pieces are inspired by different events that have taken place in his life, as you can hear them throughout his works.  Drew writes a large variety of genres, including electronic, piano and vocal pieces, as well as music for chamber ensembles.


Our second composer that was featured on the show was Michael Paolucci.  Michael is a recent graduate of WLU, and enjoys composing for film.  Michael has composed for a number of student films, and has studied with composers across North America.  He is a composer from Innisfil, Ontario, Canada, and enjoys making music because of all of the emotion that’s involved, both in writing, and listening. Whenever he writes a piece or a song, his goal is to make the listener feel something or take something away from the experience.  Today we listened to Michael’s grad piece that he wrote for wind orchestra titled “Eulogy for a Cloud”.  Eulogy for a Cloud is written in four continuous movements for full wind orchestra. The piece outlines the various cycles that clouds experience before evanescing and returning to another form and begin the cycle again. Each movement embodies a particular type of cloud. The first movement, Cirrus, focuses on the detached and wispy clouds. It is reflected in the piece by its ever shifting and pulsating nature. The second movement, Altocumulus, focuses on the layer of diffuse clouds that act as a sheet over the sky. This is represented by the omnipresent, climbing pulse throughout the movement, and the restriction of only two alternating chords. The third movement, Cumulonimbus, focuses on the creation of an imminent storm cloud. The slowly rising theme is augmented each time it is repeated through the orchestration in the brass, which reflects the growing power of an approaching storm cloud. The fourth and final movement of the piece, Cumulus, focuses on the dense white clouds that are interpreted as different shapes, animals, and objects. This is represented by moments of temporal fluidity and by the familiarity of themes returning. While listening to the piece, imagine watching clouds slowly pass in front of the sun as they become illuminated the by red glow for a brief moment before another cloud takes its place. Even though each passing cloud is only highlighted for a moment, it is within that moment that an experience is created. The brevity of an experience should never dictate its importance.  This piece was performed by the Wilfrid Laurier University Wind Orchestra in 2016 and was conducted by Jessica Kun.



WLU Symphony Orchestra

Friday, January 27th at 7pm

Theatre Auditorium

NUMUS Presents the MIX Series: Linsey Wellman
January 27, 20178:00pm
The Walper Hotel – Oak Room
20 Queen St. S. Kitchener, ON

Young Composers Showcased
February 2, 20178:00pm
KW Chamber Music Society (The Music Room)
57 Young St. W, Waterloo (near Bridgeport / Albert)




That’s all for now folks, tune in next week to hear some awesome new music!




CIA Radio Show Jan 15th, 2017

This week, the CIA radio show covered music that the hosts composed themselves, as we dove deep into different composition techniques, as well as discussing some history of mixing and mastering within electronic music.  One of the James’ wasn’t able to make it yesterday, so we had our back up host, Dirty Hil join us in the studio for a bit.  The show featured three of her eleven piece album titled Influences.  We talked about the tracks titled Hotline MiamiA Certain Romance, and 13.  Hilary is an electronic composer who wrote an album based off of her inspirations.  Hotline Miami is influenced by, well, Hotline Miami; a video game that takes place in the 80s, and is awesome.  Here we discuss how the 80s is making a comeback in many different ways; fashion, music, and movies are all going through an 80s faze.  The other two tracks are inspired by tracks from the Arctic Monkeys, which I’m sure most of you have heard of already.  At this point we discuss the use of “sidechaining”, an effect that is used quite often in music nowadays.  We talk about how it was originally used for mixing/mastering purposes, and now it is used an effect in nearly every edm song.

The second half of the show featured three pieces by one of the James’, under his alias of Danger Dave.  These three tracks were from his 80’s styled EP that he released over the summer that was sold for charity.  These tracks are all 80’s inspired, and fall under the genre of Retrowave.  James and Hilary discuss mixing/mastering, and how so much has changed over the decades.  The average loudness of tracks has gone up a significant amount lately, and there is loss of musical detail in doing so.  The question is, are modern day hits being mastered poorly?  Or is the definition of mastering changing over time?  I guess we’ll find out in the next upcoming years.

Stay tuned for next week’s show that’ll take place at Sunday at 3pm.  In the meantime, check out these useful links:

Hilary’s Soundcloud:

James aka Danger Dave’s Soundcloud:

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Shows/Laurier Music Composers (CIA)

CIA “The Sound” Nov. 20

Another great show has come and gone, but if you missed it here is a quick overview of the sounds we were talking about:

This year’s second Laurier Student Composers Concert was held in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall and saw a diverse range of styles on display. The program went as follows:

West Side Theory by the Seagram Synth Ensemble (AKA your hosts James & James)

Triptych by Isaac Page

Septet by Sergei Kofman

The Deep by Sophie Vogan

Improvisation by Maria Kouznetsova

Through the Fungi Forest by Rinor Baresha

Order In Chaos by Joseph Chiu

The Singing Part from To Know A Fly’s by Arie van de Ven with text by Erika Verhagen

It was an evening full of large ensembles: We heard a septet, a vocal duo with percussion, piano, and strings, and finally a Philip Glass-esque chamber ensemble. Smaller ensembles included two acts heavily using electronics and acoustic instruments in interesting combinations, as well as many instances of improvisation from soloists and small groups. We look forward to seeing you all at the next one, thanks to all who were in attendance! AS always you can listen to and download our weekly show for free on SoundCloud:



Improvisation Concerts Ensemble (ICE) “Does Aleatory” in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall on Nov. 23rd at 8PM

Laurier Percussion Ensemble Concert in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall on Nov. 26th at 3PM

The Sound is a show that is run by the CIA (Composers and Improvisors Association), a group of students on campus that represent student artists.  The Sound features music, sound art, poetry, spoken word, short stories (anything really!) that is written by Laurier student, alumni, and faculty.  We would love to have some of your works on the show, if you are an artist at Laurier and what to get your work on The Sound, please do so by sending your file(s) here:          and send us a brief description of your piece.

CIA “The Sound” Nov. 13th
Shows/Laurier Music Composers (CIA)/Music Shows

CIA “The Sound” Nov. 13th


In case you missed our show that airs every Sunday at 3pm, don’t panic!  Here is a quick overview of what happened:

First off, if you’re new to this, The Sound is a show that is run by the CIA (Composers and Improvisors Association), a group of students on campus that represent student artists.  The Sound features music, sound art, poetry, spoken word, short stories (anything really!) that is written by Laurier student, alumni, and faculty.  We would love to have some of your works on the show, if you are an artist at Laurier and what to get your work on The Sound, please do so by sending your file(s) here:          and send us a brief description of your piece.

This week we showcased Laurier very own Hilary Whiskin and Dave Klassen, who came into the studio to talk to us about composition and improvisation techniques.  They had much to say about these topics, but if I had to sum it up, it would be like so; if you’re stuck in a writer’s block, and can’t figure out where to begin, try limiting yourself.  “Less is more” in the world of composition.  Limit yourself in the instrumentation that you want to use, or the amount of notes.  Pick very limited guidelines and stick with it.  An example that Hilary mentioned was writing an entire piece using only a single note.

In regards to Improvisation, Dave suggested that getting “too into” what you’re doing could distract you from creating your finest work when improvising.  Playing off of your partner will inspire you to create fresh new ideas on the fly.  Heck, your partner(s) will end up doing half of the work for you if you just listen, as they will do the same for you.  Otherwise you may end up in a repetitive cycle, playing the same ideas over and over.  It’s easier than you think!

Finally, the second half of the show featured James and myself, James, improvising on the many synthesizers we have here in the Studio.  For those curious, we used a Nord Electro, Korg MS-20, Roland Juno 106, and a Kawaii SX-240.  We laughed, we cried, it was beautiful.



Student Composer Concert, Wed. Nov. 16th.  8pm, Maureen Forrester Recital Hall (Free!)

Friendly Rich & The Lollipop People:  Friday, November 18, 2016 @ 8pm | Walper Hotel – Oak Room
20 Queen St. S., Kitchener
$15 General / $10 Senior & Arts Worker /  $5 Student

WLU Symphony Orchestra: Friday, November 18, 2016 @ 8pm | Theatre Auditorium