Charles is active as a percussionist and electronic musician. He performs with free improvisation groups such as Andromeda is Coming, Canberra Experimental Music Studio, and Sverm, as well as contemporary percussion groups such as Ensemble Metatone and Ensemble Evolution.
Andromeda is Coming
Andromeda is Coming (Charles Martin and Alexander Hunter) are a Canberra-based duo utilising viola da gamba, percussion and live electronics. This debut album collects a series of free-improvised sections across two field recordings, each capturing Canberra’s intersection of urban and bush environments. The improvisations explore paired sound worlds of unconventional instruments where close microphone recordings reveal sonic details and idiosyncrasies.
Nordlig Vinter is a suite of compositions for percussion and iOS devices created by Charles Martin while living in Piteå, near the Arctic circle in northern Sweden from 2011 to 2012. Harshly cut field recordings reflect the dry, icy environment while minimal jazz inspired melodies on vibraphone and marimba evoke the quiet beauty of such a strange place.
Ensemble Metatone - Colour Music
Interweaving percussive gesture with electronic sound, Colour Music is a selection of works that seek to redefine how music can be made with touch-screen computers. The seven tracks include the results of a formal study of improvisation on three different iPad interfaces and notated compositions for iPad and percussion. This collection of Ensemble Metatone’s performances on touchscreen interfaces mirrors the formal explorations of percussion instruments initiated by composers such as John Cage in the first half of the 20th Century, an investigation that is made explicit by the group’s performance of Cage’s Trio for 7 woodblocks, first on the original blocks, and then on iPads.
Ensemble Evolution created “Sounds from the Treetops” in partnership with the Treehotel to celebrate the culture, landscapes, and innovative atmosphere of their unique working environment in Northern Sweden. Each of the six tracks is inspired one of the tree houses at the Treehotel and the works recall all aspects of northern life, from the icy metallic ring of a still day in deep winter to the otherworldly loneliness of a late night walk under the midnight sun.