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business as usual

by Nathan Bissette

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3 voice Pavans and 2 voice Dances written on a single stave.

Music notation serves three distinct functions within our tradition, The first, and most obvious, is conservation of music. It stops time in its tracks and gives a visible form to the evanescent, like a photograph. The second, and almost equally obvious, is communication of music. Passing music from one to another, for example (importantly not the only example) from composer to performer. The third is less obvious, but at least as important. That is the conception of music. For some traditions of music, notation is an integral part in the ways we compose, perform and think about it. The composition and rendering of these pieces is firmly grounded in this final function.

The links below include the music notation in pdf, sib and musicxml formats.

You are invited to modify and reuse the notation. The pieces are really rich in counterpoint history and the line between what is composed and what is arranged and reworked is quite blurred and then there is the possibility for that to continue even further, challenging the idea of authenticity in music.

If you do modify the works, it would be great to hear about it. We would be happy to include modified notation or responses in the works gathered here. The scores and files are presented simply and free from obtrusive detail, so that both the counterpoint is front and center and possibilities for modifications are greater.

The works are published under the Anti-Capitalist Software License.


Album artwork was made using a notation small sketch tool built in p5.js.


The scores are available to download here: bruise.in/deadhand/business-as-usual

The sketch tool can be used here: bruise.in/deadhand/business-as-usual/note-sketch/note-sketch.html [press h for help]


released August 28, 2022




dead hand Leicester, UK

Dead Hand is Nathan Bissette and Mateus Domingos.

We used to be BATTLE MONSTÉRE. Those sounds are shadows in the internet.

Dead Hand is an ongoing experimentation and investigative sound journey.

Here we hope to offer the collected results of this journey.
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