[spring 1988] ROOM CONCERT PROGRAM: -I-
Post Mortem Edge Time Snake Charmer
Some of the Parts Lobster Time Hall of Mirrors
performed by ROOM: Larry Ochs, sopranino & tenor saxophones William Winant, percussion Chris Brown, piano & electroacoustics with Scot Gresham-Lancaster, live electronics
Post Mortem (1984) by Chris Brown for trio with digital delay. An eight tone mode is explored in unison, canon, polytonal counterpoint, and tonally free sections, each using a unique series of digital delay settings to recycle material from the ensemble. The title refers both to an imagined transitionary state of mind, but also to the nature of afterthought.
Snakecharmer (1987) by Chris Brown, arises from a feedback network in which a synthesizer attempts to follow its own sound, guided and cajoled by intonations of the saxophonist, and accompanied by electronic percussion of two different kinds: a prepared electroacoustic piano (a vintage 60's Wurlitzer provided with percussive tone generators), and a drum machine played with hand held MIDI controllers called AIRDRUMS.
Lobster Time, Some of the Part, and Edge Time by Larry Ochs were all written for ROOM, and are structures for improvisation that combine sections written in standard musical, or in graphic notation, connected to each other by improvised sections. The improvisations are collective compositions developed by the group, taking off from the musical ideas one section and leading into those of the next. They are thus neither arbitrary nor substantially different from one performance to the next, but are composed by a method designed to take advantage of the compositional creativity of each member of the group.
Hall of Mirrors (1987) - a work for interactive, computer controlled signal processor (designed and built by Chris Brown) which explores various feedback paths between improvisers and their amplified and modulated sound. The music is structured by a rhythmically changing series of software "patches" which relate the pitch, loudness, and duration of sounds produced by the musicians to changes in their own electronic modulation. The piece specifies solo, duo, and trio combinations of instruments, as well as different mixtures of electronically altered and unaltered sounds. The improvisation makes a gradual approach towards a tune, heard once fully at the end.