Rob Levit — Silence
(Symbol System , 1999, CD)
by David Ashcraft, Published 1999-11-01
This is a CD that is truly different. Rob Levit, winner of the 1998 Julius Hemphill Composition Award, is the master of short pieces. In fact, Silence has 52 (believe it or not) pieces comprising the 50 minute disc. Do the math and the average Levit composition is under 60 seconds long (shorter than a TV commercial!). As such they tend to be vignettes, some of which sound complete and others that are more like idea fragments. The instrumentation is fairly sparse but somewhat varied with acoustic guitar augmented at times by electronics, flute, clarinet, oboe, marimba, and percussion. There is extensive use of dissonance, with many of the pieces in an experimental or free form mode. Overall I suppose one would label this in a “modern classical” genre although the music does defy easy categorization. It qualifies as a challenging listening experience since the pieces aren’t really tied together in any kind of logical fashion. Adventurous listeners will find this to be an intriguing release as Levit crams a boatload of ideas and themes into this CD. Perhaps this is the ultimate disc for those with a short attention span!
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more