Quiet Clapping

Narcotically soothing ambience

Who they?

To friends, family and the bank manager, Quiet Clapping is composer Jonathan Deasy. He’s from Cork, on the south coast of Ireland, and his 2020 album ‘Radiance’ is being given a cassette release by Sensory Leakage, retitled in the label’s house style as ‘Zener_25’. “We were in deep lockdown, and living by the sea has its benefits,” recalls Deasy. “I spent time walking and exploring the cliffs close to my home, so the album was a musical interpretation of the sound of waves and their reverberation in the caves.”

Why Quiet Clapping?

For starters, he cites US electronic pioneer Pauline Oliveros as a profound inspiration. “My interest is threefold,” he explains. “Her early electronic experiments, her work in drone music and her philosophy of deep listening.” The latter concept, an almost meditative contemplation of sound, was coined by Oliveros after her immersion in the Dan Harpole Cistern in Washington State, a vast (and mercifully empty) underground water storage facility with a 45-second reverb time. As for his own pen name… “The name doesn’t have any profound origin,” he says. “I suppose in some way it’s an homage to two very influential Irish groups, The Quiet Club and Quiet Music Ensemble.”

Tell us more

“I’ve played in bands down through the years and performed regularly in improv groups and jazz groups,” he says, clearly a consummate musician. “But Quiet Clapping is my first serious solo musical venture. I have an obsession with early electronic music and musique concrète.” He cites James Tenney and Lasse Marhaug as further inspirations, but fans of Brian Eno’s 1980s output – particularly ‘Apollo’ and ‘Thursday Afternoon’ – will also find plenty to love.

‘Zener_25’ is out now on Sensory Leakage

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