Primarily, this piece is a study of three synthesis techniques: granular synthesis, subtractive synthesis and frequency modulation. Inharmonic proportions (2:9 2:7 3:8 2:5 2:7 4:9), the Golden Mean (1:1.168) and several instances of a 1:4:5 ratio were implemented to alter the color of the tone over time and accentuate beating and sidebands. Using subtractive synthesis, a raw noise signal was shaped into a bell tone that was then altered to have textures and timbres. Recurring clouds of grains with varying density appear as either percussive elements or time-stretched noise.
The instruments used in Sublimation were synthesized in Supercollider, an environment and programming language for real time audio synthesis and algorithmic composition. The score was written and generated using Common Music, an object-oriented music composition environment.
A variety of stochastic processes were implemented in the structure of the score. For example, the density and duration of the grains were effected by random distributions that result in widely different results each time the score is generated.