Aarhus Universitets segl

Mads Krogh: Reconsidering Musical Genre: Assemblage, Abstraction and Digital Terms.

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Torsdag 25. april 2024,  kl. 14:15 - 16:00


Kasernen, Building 1584, Door A, Room 112. Langelandsgade 145, 8000 Aarhus C

Mads KroghReconsidering Musical Genre: Assemblage, Abstraction and Digital Terms

In the wake of recent decades’ digitization, a myriad of techniques has emerged for mapping musical life, discerning patterns in sound or musico-cultural practices, and compiling labels, tags, categories, and classes on an unprecedented scale. Proliferating genre catalogs in the context of digital platforms and the conjunction of genre with notions of, for example, mood and activity are among the consequences, which challenge prevailing scene-based and identificational understandings in musical genre studies. In this presentation, I answer to this challenge by suggesting two conceptual developments. First, the concept of musico-generic assemblage is introduced to probe the complexity of genre formation. Specifically, the concept allows for reconsidering genres’ dynamic constitution in heterogenous milieus (e.g. contexts of everyday consumption meshed with music-industrial, techno-scientific apparatuses) and their association with other ‘types’ of music (related musico-generic terms such as style, format, aesthetic, or mood and activity). Second, the concept of abstraction is considered to suggest how musical genres (and related types) form as generic categories, in part, via processes of decontextualization, which may explain the potential of categories to travel. The changing scale and pace of processes of abstraction are among the major ways in which digitization impacts current conditions of musical life.

Mads Krogh is Associate Professor of Popular Music Culture at the School of Communication and Culture, AU. His research deals with issues of genre, mediation, and practice combining inspiration from cultural sociology, assemblage theory, affect theory, and actor-network theory. In recent years, he has been particularly concerned with genre formation and classificatory practices in digital contexts of musical life. Recent publications include Music Radio: Building Communities, Mediating Genres (co-edited, Bloomsbury, 2019), Methodologies of Affective Experimentation (co-edited, Palgrave, 2022), and Musical Genre: Assemblage and Abstraction (Bloomsbury, forthcoming).

Æstetisk Seminar F2024 er tilrettelagt af Morten Kyndrup og Thomas Rosendal, Institut for Kommunikation og Kultur, Aarhus Universitet.