"An arbitrary succession of more or less irritating sounds"
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Thursday, 19 April 2012

Freedom suite



Few American tourists touching down in Europe this summer will be as welcome as Duane Pitre. After all, how many other post-classical composers choose to mark their new Important release (& a half, split with Eleh) with their own Alien Workshop skateboard deck (though not many others have a background in pro skating, granted...)? 


For that matter, how many would bring out a release (& a half) as subtly & richly constrained, as radically free in its "open yet orderly" way & ultimately as bucolically lovely & absorbing as Feel Free (in each of its gripping 'manifestations', all of which stream below)?


These ears are solely tempted to get themselves along both for his sextet at Cafe Oto (his tour's only ensemble performance) & the next day's solo show outside London...


Note that Pitre's ED09 (for string ensemble): Live at The Stone featured in LMYE's Festive 50 + 50 of 2011's key releases. 



Blurb: "Feel Free is a composition by Duane Pitre that currently has three possible manifestations: solo performance, group performance, and sound installation. At the core of all of them is the pillar of the work, an open yet orderly system whose intention is to produce potentially infinite variations of self-generating rhythm and melody. This system is created in part by a Max/MSP patch, designed by the composer, which consists of two (unprocessed) sound sources: guitar harmonics and simple-timbre electronic tones (in the solo/group versions, the latter are performed by the composer).


These solo and group versions of Feel Free find the work following a sequence of movements, with each embodying slight variations in feel, pitch material, performance methods, and rules. Blanketing the entire performance are suggestions given to the performers, such as that they should feel free to interact with one another, as well as with the random, real-time, computer generated patterns of guitar harmonics; therefore making intuitive yet rule-based decisions, in that moment of the piece, instead of relying on standard notation to dictate their every move. This approach creates a performance that is unique upon each occasion that it is performed; it is free from its own restraints."


& also: "The two major focal points in the creation of composer Duane Pitre's Feel Free, his new work for a unique sextet combination, were rhythm and melody. An open yet orderly system intended to produce potentially infinite variations of self-generating rhythm and melody was carefully created for this piece, allowing the sextet musicians to approach these factors in a freer manner. This ‘musical system,’ combined with the fixed elements of the composition, in turn, spawned a rich foundation of harmony & rhythm that sounds & feels exotic and new.

The title, Feel Free, derives in part from one of the composition’s instructions to its performers. It suggests that they should feel free to interact with (or ignore) one another, as well as with the random, real-time, computer generated patterns of guitar harmonics (the pillar of the work); therefore making intuitive yet rule-based decisions, in that moment of the piece, instead of relying on standard notation to dictate their every move. This approach creates a performance that is unique upon each occasion that it is performed; it is free from its own restraints.


Pitre set out to compose a piece as a musical lattice-work that was rich with layers and interweaving rhythmic patterns, superimposing themselves upon each another in ways that would at times synchronize with and without intention. It is a system rooted in chaos that finds alignment in a myriad of ways.







Important: LMYE only makes music available that artists/labels have chosen to share freely. Let us know if something here shouldn't be.

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