It is generally thought that, except for a few pieces with specifically notated quartertones, the remainder of Ives’s music was conceived for conventional twelve-tone equal temperament. However, there’s a great deal of evidence in Ives’s scores and writings suggesting a general tuning for his music that can best be described as Extended Pythagorean.
Three CDs of African-American postminimalist Julius Eastman’s music have just been released by New World Records, marking the end of a seven-year search to reassemble the composer’s scattered scores and archival recordings.
Ives wrote that the themes and general plan for the Universe Symphony are quite clearly indicated in the sketches he left behind. But deciphering those sketches has been one of American music’s greatest detective sagas.
On-hold music is a strange Janus-faced beast. Neither background nor foreground, this forced-listening netherworld sounds like a perfect spot for art to intervene.
Feldman exploits the inherently paradoxical possibilities of visually distinct notations that sound ‘the same’, suggesting that they might imply shadings of difference in the sound.
How does the ear decode the acoustic information that we receive, and what can we learn about music from an understanding of how the ear and the brain respond to sound?
A primer on playing old instruments in new ways.