It's the most wonderful tiiiiiime of the month: New Releases. Experience the pick of the piles, and the very best in digital promos on this New Sounds program. There's new music from finger-style guitarist William Tyler, from his latest record, "Impossible Truth," along with acoustic folk and "systems music" from the English quartet, Spiro. Also, listen to something from pianist Matthew Shipp, and a dance score from the composer/saxophone player Ken Field. Plus, new music from Alexander Berne and the Abandoned Orchestra. And more.
Besides drummer jokes, there might be almost as many viola jokes tied for the lead in musical humor. We'll put all that aside for this New Sounds program, where the viola takes center stage, not necessarily as a solo instrument in a concerto or a chamber setting. Hear new works for viola, some for viola & electronics, and viola d'amore. From a forthcoming record by new music champion Nadia Sirota, listen to a piece by Missy Mazzoli, "Tooth And Nail."
Hear works for electric guitar on this New Sounds program, including music by Bryce Dessner (of the National and Clogs) and Glenn Branca (the leader of many guitar armies.) Plus, listen to a piece by Nick Didkovsky from a private recording at a panel held in Philadelphia, and something from Steven Mackey as well.
For this guitar-centric New Sounds, listen to music from Robert Fripp and his League of Crafty Guitarists, along with something from the French guitar trio, Philharmonie. We’ll listen to an electric guitar work from Philharmonie, “The Elephant Bell-Ringers.” Also, hear Steve Reich’s entire three-movement “Electric Counterpoint,” as performed by Pat Metheny on tape.
On this New Sounds program, hear music from Iraqi oud master Rahim AlHaj, in collaboration with accordion virtuoso Guy Klucevsek, from a fascinating double album of cross-cultural collaborations, called “Little Earth.” AlHaj studied with Munir Bashir, but was also trained in Western classical music, and on this global effort was joined by folks as diverse as Cape Verde’s Maria de Barros, Bill Frisell, Peter Buck, and Mali’s Yacouba Sissoko.
Ryuichi Sakamoto,, the Japanese-born, New York-based pianist, producer, film score composer, and electronic music pioneer is also a citizen of the world, and his travels to Greenland’s ice fields to study the effects of climate change can be felt in his latest work, sometimes literally. Sakamoto captured sounds in disparate locations such as under the sea and on top of a glacier to create the minimal ambient works that make up part of his double CD, "Playing the Piano/Out of Noise." (Both CDs were released separately in Japan in 2009.)
For this New Sounds, listen to music by Russian violist/composer Ljova (real name Lev Zhurbin) performed by the string quartet Brooklyn Rider. Then there's music by young composer and drummer David T Little, and music by the extremely versatile violinist/composer Todd Reynolds. Plus, hear something from the Turtle Island Quartet and composer/mayor Phillip K Bimstein as well.
For this New Sounds, listen to unusual art songs from the likes of Mikel Rouse, Clogs, and Carla Kihlstedt & Matthias Bossi. Hear brand new material from Clogs, the purveyors of vocal chamber pop, from their forthcoming EP, “The Sundown Song.” There's also a piece from Texas-born, Brooklyn based composer Corey Dargel, and his song cycle – “Someone Will Take Care of Me,” as performed by ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble.)
From the multi-ton carillon to a tricycle bell, hear songs featuring bells, or about bells on this New Sounds. Listen to a song that reworks "Bicycle Built for Two" from Tin Hat, and a work from the group ICE (International Contemporary Ensemble) playing music by Nathan Davis. Hear music by Pantha du Prince in collaboration with the Norwegian percussion ensemble the Bell Laboratory, involving a bell carillon, a three-ton instrument comprised of 50 bronze bells and operated using a keyboard.
Listen to music from Wires Under Tension, a NYC-based band formed by multi-instrumentalist/composer Christopher Tignor and drummer Theo Metz. Their latest creation is called “Replicant, ” and is, yes(!) inspired by Philip K Dick's “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?”, along with the film adaptation, “Blade Runner.” According to the album’s site, “‘Replicant’ takes on the questions of mechanized identity, the feeling of flawed copies, and the inescapable bummer of being too self-aware.” The music is layer after tasty layer of impossible sounds created by synth, swirls, drum licks, offered up all together as post-rock with grooves.
This New Sounds brings musical accompaniment for drama in the form of the Portico Quartet, a young instrumental band, who play mostly acoustic music using wind instruments, bass and percussion, including a 21st century instrument called the hang. (The hang is a dimpled dome-shaped, tuned metal percussion instrument that sounds like a cross between the steel drum and the mbira (thumb piano) and looks like two woks welded together.)
American sound-designer, film editor and composer, Matteo Marchisano-Adamo makes cinematic audio sculptures out of prepared piano and electronics from a collection of “Inventions.” We'll also hear electronic music based on the sounds of Indonesian gamelan by Gregory Taylor, and some rooted in sounds from Jamaica and Zimbabwe as well. That, and more on this New Sounds.
For this New Sounds, listen to choral music of the British Isles, Armenia, and more, including the Medieval music group, Canty, dubbed “Scotland’s Anonymous 4.” They perform Irish composer Michael McGlynn’s “Lorica,” from a recent release, "Carmina Celtica." The record features world premieres of nine contemporary works - some written for Canty, commissioned by them, or gifted by the composer.
This New Sounds program aims to take a tour of music around the world, in 59 minutes or less. Listen to Bengali, Punjabi, Ethiopian and Senegalese music, along with other sounds. Punjabi wedding music meets New Orleans Brass bands in the music of Brooklyn-based party band Red Baraat, then Samuel Yirga takes the groove of Ethiopian music as his starting point in a trance-jazz tune.
Listen to a preview of the forthcoming full-length record from Matmos - "The Marriage of True Minds," which has parapsychology as its theme. This techno chamber music from the now Baltimore-based duo builds grooves out of unusual and startling sound sources, like the processed sound of a tap dancer shuffling on a stone floor, an amplified rubber band, bagpipes, and honky tonk piano, along with vocalists.
From the New Sounds Live concert series, hear songs by Yasiin Bey, the former Mos Def, arranged by Derek Bermel and played by Yasiin Bey and members of the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Alan Pierson. Plus, the world premiere of David T. Little's "Am I Born," and more works from the show, recorded live at the World Financial Center's Winter Garden in fall of 2011.
Accordionist and composer Guy Klucevsek stops by for a visit, on the occasion of the reissue of “Polka From the Fringe,” 29 previously out-of-print tracks for accordion by Klucevsek and 27 other composers. With titles like Lois V Vierk’s “Attack Cat Polka,” or Elliott Sharp’s jolt of punk in “Happy Chappie Polka,” there’s a bit of playful wackiness to the collection, yet also some loveliness – like William Duckworth’s “Polking Around” and Peter Garland’s “Club Nada Polka.”
For this New Sounds, take a listen to some music from the chamber group yMusic, playing Son Lux and a work by Judd Greenstein. Also, music from Clogs, featuring Bryce Dessner and more in the vein of "indie classical."
Sample some music made with an electronic component on this New Sounds. Hear chamber music with tape loops from New York-based composer Michael Montes. His works take cues from Renaissance composer Josquin DePrez, Pink Floyd and Brian Eno.
Listen to some American tales on this New Sounds program. We’ll hear the mesmerizing 11-minute reflection, “Another Day In America” as delivered through Fenway Bergamot, Laurie Anderson's wise and witty “Voice of Authority” alter-ego and more of her musical and lyrical medititations on America in the 21st century, from her recent "Homeland."
We will listen to music written as dance music but played on acoustic instruments, including covers and also acoustic music that delivers an electronic feel. Listen for Alarm Will Sound, Nik Bartsch/Ronin, Francesco Tristano, and much, much more.
The Listeners have spoken with their clicks! We have the results of this year's poll, and there were some unsurprising contenders (Brian Eno, Philip Glass, and Bang on a Can) who annually make their way onto these lists, as well as a few shockers. The listeners also happened to agree with some of John Schaefer's picks, as aired on last night's show.) Hear the full Listener Poll Top Ten Results tonight.
For this New Sounds, listen to John Schaefer's completely personal and opinionated look at the ten best new music releases of 2012. There just might be something by a Brooklyn-based Afrobeat party band, a violinist (usually a classical player) in collaboration with a German improvising pianist, and perhaps something from a cult American singer. Listen for a vocal octet and a composer who reworked one of the classical music "war horse" works to great effect.
Dutch lutenist Jozef van Wissem visits the studio with none other than minimalist director and comic book hair model Jim Jarmusch. Their filmmaker/musician collaboration, "The Joy that Never Ends" combines palindromic trance / mystical lute pieces by Van Wissem, and Jarmusch's waves of subtle guitar feedback meandering from his amplifier. For this New Sounds program, they offer live performance of their collaboration as a preview for their live show at Issue Project Room on Friday, Oct. 14. As a fun aside, Jozef van Wissem (who performs on a 24-string Baroque lute) has also written music for the medieval SIMS video game.
For this New Sounds, composer and founder of the new music group Newspeak, David T. Little, joins John Schaefer to present selections from his hour-long multimedia one-man opera, “Soldier Songs.” The work is in three acts, which explore the perceptions of war throughout the character’s life; Youth – where war is a game, Warrior - where war is reality, and Elder - which is more of a philosophical approach to war. Games are at the heart of the work, as evidenced by the accompanying visuals - realistic-looking video game imagery by an animator.
For this edition of New Sounds, listen to more highlights from the annual new music extravaganza, recorded live this past June of 2010 at the World Financial Center. We'll hear the concert version of "Shelter" by founding Bang on a Can composers Michael Gordon, Julia Wolfe, and David Lang, as performed by the new music supergroup, Signal, led by Brad Lubman.
Jelly Roll Morton identified “the Latin tinge” as a major component in the development of jazz. Now, the rhythms and sounds of Latin music can be heard in the long-awaited Malian-Cuban collaboration that was meant to take place when the Buena Vista Social Club was born – “AfroCubism.”
For this New Sounds, hear music for the rich and unexpected combination of folk singer and ensemble. We’ll take a listen to Swedish composer Bo Hannson’s work for chorus & folk singer, (along with string ensemble), written on chryptical latin text from ancient times. The singer is fiddler, composer, and voice magician, Lena Willemark, who is as at home with folk music as she is with avant jazz.
For this New Sounds, listen to but a few of the 100 compositions and sounds from a project called “100 x John, A Global Salute to John Cage,” featuring field recordings by composers and sound artists around the world. There is music made from the sounds that surround us, including the last town in Nepal before base camp on Mount Everest to stalactites in a cave, 700 meters underground in Serbia. Hear a composition by Arsenije Jovanic, comprised of the sounds of stalactites struck by wooden drum sticks, pieces of stone, and the composer’s hands, recorded in a cave, 700 m under the earth in Eastern Serbia.
Listen to music built around the sound of delay, both digital and tape looping on this New Sounds program. We’ll hear from the most recent offering by Phillip Schroeder, “A Passage Through A Dream.” It’s a record featuring the layered sounds of piano and clarinet, processed through digital delay, resulting in "lush kaleidoscopic textures." (The composer's own words.) Also, the otherworldly waves of drone created by Terry Riley’s use of loops and delay on "Poppy Nogood And The Phantom Band All Night Flight, Vol. 1."
For this New Sounds, John Schaefer sifts through the avalanche of CDs (and digital offerings) which has piled up in his office to find a sampling of new releases worthy of showcasing in tonight's New Sounds program. Also, he'll look back at some of the things that came out during 2012 that might have gone unnoticed on the chaos that is his desk, and ahead to some of the things that 2013 holds.