An Awkward Dance With the Other

Matthew Herbert's «One Pig» album between Sound Art and Pop Culture

Bastian Zimmermann
Matthew Herbert's album One Pig (2011) is based on sound recordings of a pig's life, including its slaughter and consumption. Herbert ostensibly composes a pop-cultural narrative, a chronology of the events of birth, life, death and even mourning. Yet at the same time Herbert thematizes the creative process of this music in the sense of a meta-narration – in other words, a pop-music construction of a narrative of a pig's life. The processes taking place between the diegetic sound-space of the recordings and the extreme functionalization of sounds on the album (processes that consistently exist in a borderline state) cast new light on the possible dimensions of an artist’s manipulation of sound.

by moxi