close your eyes
 
[music, albums]

XX: 1974 Steve Reich - Drumming


Steve Reich - Drumming

The choice of Steve Reich's minimal drumming piece reflects my current state of over-saturation with conventional music. As with 1982's On Land I picked the most experimental release from the poll. The one which comes closest to sound and is furthest away from traditional harmonic and melodic music.

There are only beats here. 85 minutes split in four parts. First we have bongos, then we have marimbas, then glockenspiels and in the last part all three of them together. There is a natural rhythm vibe which is totally hypnotic. The slow gradual shifts of speed and metre keep the attention of the listener.

Steve Reich (born 1936) composed his longest work in 1971 shortly after his trip to Africa where he studied the drum patterns of the Ewe tribe from Ghana (Writings on Music, 1965-2000, page 55ff.). He especially concentrated on the Gahu dance, a very popular dance which is not restricted to a special time or place. The music and the dance to it have the same name and can't be separated.

This is a world music composition which covers Africa with the bongos, South America with the marimbas and East Asia with the glockenspiel emulating the gamelan. There is a progression from the hardest most physical beats by the bongos which often sound like patter of horses hooves to the wooden sounding marimbas and finally to the higher metallic sounds of the glockenspiel. Reich calls them timbres. A movement from the body to the spirit. Additionally Reich uses voices in the marimba part and whistling plus piccolo flutes in the glockenspiel part to imitate the drum sounds.

I think this is one of the rare occasions in music where a highly original idea (minimal evolution) is realised in a perfectly compelling way. Especially when I think of the minimal music I know which always was more fascinating in theory than in practice (see Phil Glass's symphonic overkill, Michael Nyman's sugary melodies or Brian Eno's dull(!?) tape echo-delay experiment Discreet Music). A reason why this succeeds could be that Reich only focusses on rhythm, a basic component of music. There is an accordance of minimal movement and use of minimal, monochromatic instruments.

The end of the composition comes as a shock. It is as if life ends. The heart beat of the universe stops. We are left with silence again. And I can maybe listen to some more normal music with tunes and stuff again.

Here is the overview of the series 40 years, 40 albums of which part XX was this post. I am half through. Ouff.


 
 

an interesting choice alex. i've been feeding myself weekly doses of reich for years and have been sated recently with the 10 cd "works" box set. i've also just recently received a bootleg from a 1982 MoMA concert which includes some parts of 'drumming' too - quite lovely all round.

... link  


... comment





 
last updated: 4/30/17 6:47 PM
subscribers: 387
contact: alex63 at bigfoot dot com
40 years, 40 albums
why this is called close your eyes
some photos
status
Youre not logged in ... Login
menu
... home
... tags

... antville home
recent

Audience feedback


“That's my advice if anything terrible ever happens to you: Form a ...
by alex63 @ 4/30/17 6:47 PM

rhein-main live


03/02 GIANT SAND, F, Brotfabrik..............
by alex63 @ 3/30/17 1:56 PM

Tom Tom Club - Genius of Love


Whatchu gonna do when you get out of jail?I'm gonna have some ...
by alex63 @ 3/30/17 1:51 PM

1985


Miles Davis hat mal über Prince gesagt, dass er eine seltsame ...
by alex63 @ 5/14/16 11:46 PM

Stop making sense or long live the plural


Die Suche nach dem Sinn ist deswegen vergeblich weil das Leben nicht ...
by alex63 @ 5/14/16 12:23 AM

Men and women are two different species!


Starting with the title's premise, that men and women are two different ...
by I Kafallo @ 3/26/15 5:31 PM

the place to be


war am donnerstag zum ersten mal im berghain und ich glaube es ...
by alex63 @ 12/27/14 6:43 PM
...
kehlkopfkrebs habe ich laut hno jedenfalls nicht. danke für die aufmunterung, eigentlich ...
by alex63 @ 6/27/14 9:01 AM
April 2018
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
2930
April

03/02 GIANT SAND, F, Brotfabrik.............
.


they rock
music (EN)
---------------
aloof from inspiration
an aquarium drunkard
the art of noise NEW
aurgasm
the blue in the air
bradley's almanac
destination out
disquiet
dissensus
dj martian
egg city radio
eyes that can see in the dark
fingertips
i love music
an idiot's guide to dreaming
k-punk
largehearted boy
leonard's lair
misha4music
moistworks
motel de moka
musicophilia
one faint deluded smile
organissimo jazz forums
the perfumed garden
said the gramophone
silence is a rhythm too
stereogum
swens blog
utopian turtletop
vain, selfish & lazy
vinyl mine
warped reality
wordsandmusic

music (DE, FR)
--------------------
la blogothèque
euroranch
hinternet
machtdose
le musterkoffer musikstrom
satt.org: musik
schallplattenmann
die zeit - musik

other (EN)
---------------
josh blog
open chess diary
orbis quintus
the ringdahl family NEW
time4time
wood s lot

other (DE)
---------------
ahoi polloi
bahnchaos NEU
bloggold NEU
cargo NEU
chill
daily ivy
dichtheit und wahrung
einschicht
etc.pp.
filmtagebuch
goncourt's blog
herdentrieb
hotel mama
(i think) he was a journalist
jacks blog NEU
ligne claire
malorama
meine kleine stadt
mek wito
passantin
passe.par.tout
pêle-mêle dans ma tête
private collection
reisenotizen aus der realität
schachblätter
schachblog
der schachneurotiker
with or without words...
x.antville

blog bardo
---------------
the absintheur's journal
brain farts
buked & scorned
dd denkt laut
ja zu aa
the mystical beast
ohrzucker
sofa. rites de passage
sound of the suburbs
spoilt victorian child
three hundred bars
yo, ivanhoe


blogs arranged by birth date of their authors

RSS Feed

Made with Antville
powered by
Helma Object Publisher