of a Lost Music, publicity photo
photo Christopher Best
Matthew Marshall, who commissioned the work and gave its premiere
photo courtesy Matthew Marshall
The Flesh', Emma Jane Louvelle's choreography of Echoes of a Lost
Music, with music performed live on stage photo
courtesy Nadine Bauer
(earlier version) (Christopher
Best: electric guitar)
with Sarah Gray on SoundArt Radio (24th June 2011)
half remembered, half forgotten. Songs absorbed through the
womb. The waking remnants of a melody composed in dreaming. The
air still moving infinitesimally to every sound that ever was.
The echoes; the chord of resonance; the music of the spheres.
2009, I was commissioned by guitarist Matthew Marshall to write
something for a tour he was planning of New Zealand. Matthew already
had an impressive contemporary repertoire for the classical guitar
but had recently embraced the electric as well. Having acquired
a Boss DD-20 digital delay pedal, he wanted something that would
explore this very different sound world to best effect. Being
rather critical of many so-called 'looping' pieces - the way the
loops restrict both form and development and often encourage a
lazy kind of layering of sound, I resolved to rise to this challenge
by researching deeply into the untapped potential of this device.
After many months of trial and error, pushing the loop pedal to
its extremes, adding EBow (a hand-held electromagnetic device
for sustaining notes) and re-tuning the guitar microtonally, I
found a music that I'd long felt in my bones but never before
quite been able to express; an ambient music, one that dared only
to hint at ideas; music that could perhaps go on forever.
The work was premiered in Tauranga, New Zealand, on 5th August
2009 and was subsequently toured around both North and South Island.
After I began performing the music myself in June 2011, a succession
of revisions and improvements gradually evolved, the piece finally
settling on its definitive form by the autumn of 2013. As well
as concert performances, the music was choreographed by Louvelle
Dance, both dance and music being given live on stage.