Test Tone, 1000hz, 33 rpm, Dadaist Turntablism – Yann Leguay


1000hz is a frequency commonly used as a test tone in audio perception experiments. Rigorous research into human sensitivity to sound and auditory thresholds has often used 1000Hz as a reference point for determining the quietest tones a person with perfect hearing can perceive. Test tones are also commonly used for configuring audio equipment, PAs, speakers and digital audio interfaces. This frequency is also sometimes used as a test tone for radio or TV stations. Yann Leguayʼs installation piece “Test Tone, 1000hz, 33 rpm” consists of a vinyl record and a record player whose respective motions have been reversed. The player, arm and stylus revolve around the static record in order to create a 1000hz Test Tone frequency, albeit with a momentary glitch at a slightly higher frequency on each revolution. The role reversal here suggests a Dadaist impulse and the contradictory deconstruction of utility proposes a remodification of the perceptual expectations of sound in relation to the materiality from which it arises. Yann refers to himself as a “media saboteur” working counter to accepted norms in auditive performances. He reappropriates the utility of different kinds of media in his installations while releasing a variety of dysfunctional sound recordings. His non-conventional output includes a 7-inch record without a hole as well as performing a live disintegration of a microphone with an angle grinder. Paul Prudence