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Three-Phrase Phase
00:00 / 10:33

Prerecorded electronics.


The basis for this work is an arpeggiating pattern using fast, uneven rhythmic values in the ratio 3:4:5. Pairs of voices enter successively, running at slightly different tempos, gradually converging on an abrupt, even vicious release of tension, ending one section as the next begins. The watery, rocky texture which opens and closes the piece provides atmospheric contrast, and the accumulating "snaps" in the middle section are improvised (rather than formally calculated).

Perhaps a few of the preludes from J. S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier and Louis Andriessen's De Staat had something to do with this design, as well as such things as the irregularity of some Bulgarian rhythmic modes. Certainly Steve Reich's pioneering work in "phasing" matters here, though here the music begins out of sync and comes together, rather than diverging. One might hear a distended picture of wonder and apprehension emerging, as if some rare, massive leviathan surfaces for air and then descends into obscurity.

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