Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Thorkell Sigurbjörnsson - La Jolla Good Friday (CP² Recordings, 1981)

Icelandic composer Thorkell Sigurbjörnsson, whose principal instrument is the piano, studied music at the Reykjavik College of Music. In the '50s, he came to the US and continued his studies in composition and electronic music, most notably at the University of Illinois under Kenneth Gaburo and Lajaren Hiller. La Jolla Good Friday is an electronic piece composed while on a visit to the Center for Music Experiment at the University of San Diego. Taken from the back notes-

              "On Good Friday, everyone had left the Center for Easter vacation. I should be returning home in four days. Sitting there, all alone, admiring all the paraphernalia from the computer to the 4-channel tape recorder, all my grand plans about how I was going to use the day slowly disintegrated. They were replaced by something else: mysterious and beautiful harmonies filled my head. They came and they went. I was in tune with Kepler! A true and wondrous inspiration. However, I soon discovered its source. It was not of divine origin. Outside the studio doors, an old janitor was just using the opportunity, when nobody was around, to wax the floors with his machine. They were creating this din. What followed, can be heard on this record, with one modification-the four tracks are compressed into two..."

Download here.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Annea Lockwood - The Glass World of Anna Lockwood (Tangent Records, 1970)

Annea Lockwood is a New Zealand born, American composer whose works often utilize unique sound sources such as glass or pianos grown over with moss. She has also recorded works inspired by the Fluxus movement in which pianos are played while being submersed in water or set aflame. Glass World, for which Lockwood is probably best known, is a showcase of experimental sonorities created by glass in various forms. Download it here.