“My first experiments with sound in the early to mid-80‘s utilized guitar, amplifier, turntables, toys and crude tape loops created with cassettes, all recorded to 4-track tape. I couldn't afford decent equipment, so I had to adapt my ideas to very makeshift means. I eventually found that this utilitarian approach forced me to think differently about sound, fueling my creativity. I used some of these sounds as background support for a sculpture exhibition, but it wasn't until the early 90‘s, after writing to Jeph Jerman, discovering the ‘tape network’, hearing the work of various artists such as :zoviet*france:, and issuing several limited cassettes as Augur, that I began to seriously think about sound as an creative entity unto itself.
“More theoretically, I am committed to the idea that art/music, more than being a thing or an industry, is actually a fluid and transformative process (in an alchemical sense), with it's roots in our common ancient past and preconscious depths, and that the results of this process are maps of/to lost and uncharted realms. In a culture of encroaching technology, increasing hyper-rationality, and stifling binary thought, I feel it is not only a radical approach, but of increasing importance (as both an artist and as a male in this society), to address feeling, intuition, the unacknowledged and other subtleties of the totality of being.” - S. Brand
Augur: n. 1. one of the body of ancient Roman officials charged with observing and interpreting mens, for guidance in public affairs. 2. any soothsayer; prophet. -v.t. 3. to divine or predict, as from omens; prognosticate. 4. to afford of an omen. -v.i. 5. to conjecture from signs or omens; presage. 6. to be a sign; bode.
The name Augur was chosen, because of it's mediumistic connotations regarding the role of the artist in creation.