textura questionnaire I

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Marvin Ayres
Barreca | Leimer
Building Instrument
Taylor Deupree
David Douglas
Kyle Bobby Dunn
Dusted Lux
Ensemble Economique
The Eye Of Time
Benjamin Finger
M. Geddes Gengras
Hatakeyama & Hakobune
Carl Hultgren
Imaginary Softwoods
Isnaj Dui
David Lang
Linear Bells
JC Sanford
Günter Schlienz
Seelig & Metcalf
Seelig & Nerell
Sons Of Magdalene
Håkon Stene
Robert Scott Thompson
Throwing Snow
Julia Wolfe
Girma Yifrashewa
Jeppe Zeeberg

Compilations / Mixes
5 Years of No. 19 Music

EPs / Singles
Blind EP2
Children Of The Stones
Dylan C
Katsunori Sawa

Marvin Ayres: Ultradian Rhythms
Wall Of Waves/Market Square

Having already issued a number of well-received albums such as Cellosphere, Neptune, and Harmogram Suite, British composer Marvin Ayres returns with the wondrous Ultradian Rhythms. This latest effort can easily be heard as an encapsulation of sorts, a six-part composition that brings together the myriad strengths of Ayres as both composer and musician. Interestingly, though it began life as a short improvised piece for live performance, it has blossomed into a scored orchestral suite for the recording.

Nearly an hour long, Ultradian Rhythms features six movements, five numbered “Variations” and the nineteen-minute closing piece “Ultradian,” each of which presents a distinct musical character. Applying the principle of cyclical ultradian rhythms to the work, Ayres creates an oceanic soundworld where a lilting swirl is generated by an orchestra-sized collection of string instruments. Hazy patterns in “Ultradian” and the first and fourth variations loop in an hypnotic manner reminiscent of Wolfgang Voigt's Gas recordings Zauberberg, Königsforst, and Pop—though with the beats stripped away, of course, and with Ayre's opaque string masses swooning so potently, the listener is quickly pulled into the music's complex web. But if those movements align themselves to ambient-electronic soundscaping, the second, third, and fifth variations, so powerfully mournful and supplicating in tone, draw a clear line from Ayres to a classical music figure such as John Tavener and specifically his The Protecting Veil.

What makes Ultradian Rhythms particularly compelling as a sonic experience is that every violin, viola, cello, and double bass part was played live by Ayres, with no copies or duplicates generated in order to simulate an orchestra. In other words, while overdubbing was of course used, the recording's orchestral effect wasn't realized by merely duplicating a single recorded part but rather by painstakingly playing and layering multiple parts, a move that lends this remarkable recording of modern classical music enhanced authenticity and credibility.

July 2014