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The Visual Music Film

The Visual Music Film by Aimee Mollaghan
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The Visual Music Film explores the concept and expression of musicality in the visual music film, in which visual presentations are given musical attributes such as rhythmical form, structure and harmony. The role of music has, in general, been neglected when analysing visual music textually. To scrutinise these texts, The Visual Music Film interrogates them not only in terms of their existence as moving pictures but also gives equal weight to their aural aspect, considering them in terms of specifically musical parameters. Drawing on the disciplines of film theory, art history, music theory and philosophy, this book takes an interdisciplinary approach to investigating the measurable influence that wider contextual, philosophical and historical developments and debates in these areas bore on the aesthetics of specific visual music films.

By drawing on the analogy of the absolute in music to demonstrate how musical concepts can function across the disciplinary boundaries of music and film, the first half illustrates how musical ideas can be applied both formally and conceptually to the moving image in order to elucidate the musical characteristics of the text. The second part of this book focuses on the technological developments that evolved symbiotically with the visual music film. It explores the effect that colour processing had on the overall audiovisual structure of the visual music film and it investigates how particular styles of musical composition dictated the development of specific technical processes. It also examines how the technical processes of animated sound emerged in the search for a greater correlation between the visual and sound tracks of the visual music film. Finally, this book marries the inquiry into technological innovation of its second half with the historical, aesthetic and philosophical concerns of earlier chapters, considering John Whitney's concern with the unification of sound and image through the shared foundation of mathematical harmony.

Palgrave Macmillan; August 2015
227 pages; ISBN 9781137492821
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Title: The Visual Music Film
Author: Aimee Mollaghan
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