Åke Parmerud

Repulse has been performed in Montréal and Stockholm…

Repulse (Repulsion) was composed with the material that became ‘outcast’ in the process of creating Isola, a mixed work for chamber orchestra and tape commissioned by Asko Ensemble from The Netherlands. Large parts of Repulse were concieved as a complementary layer to Isola, but somewhere along the compositional process things went very, very wrong… The layers clashed, invariably argueing, fighting and generally misbehaving in relation to each other. Helplessly watching the approaching disaster, I saw no other way than to cut all links and set each layer to live its own respective life.

Thus expelled from the process, Repulse later became a ‘pure’ tape composition, free of all agonizing terrors imposed by the demanding presence of the instrumental paths of composing.

Repulse can be regarded as the first piece in which I explored multiple layering of textural processes. Up to five simultaneous layers of sound from time to time creates a dense sound image, although transparent at all times due to techniques such as spatial simulation, frequency displacement and clear texture identity.

Repulse was realized in 1986 at the composer’s studio and premiered on September 3, 1986 at Berwald Hall (Stockholm, Sweden). Repulse received the First Prize at the 16th Bourges International Electroacoustic Music Competition (France, 1988).


  • September 3, 1986, Concert, Berwaldhallen — Sverige Radio, Stockholm (Sweden)



stereo fixed medium



Date Work Program
July 22, 2003 Åke Parmerud, Repulse (1986) Brian Turner / WFMU 91.1 FM (USA)
July 15, 2008 Åke Parmerud, Repulse (1986) Brian Turner / WFMU 91.1 FM (USA)
May 1, 2009 Åke Parmerud, Repulse (1986) Radio Horizon 93.9 (South Africa)
June 1, 2015 Åke Parmerud, Repulse (1986) Acoustic Frontiers / CKCU 93.1 FM (Canada)
June 17, 2016 Åke Parmerud, Repulse (1986) rAdioCUSTICA / Český rozhlas (Czech Republic)

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