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Vicky Chow, Tristan Perich: Surface Image

Label: New Amsterdam

The interlocking rhythm patterns of Steve Reich, the micro-universe contained in the drones of La Monte Young, the hypnotic sounds of the German motorik bands of the ’70s…these are a few of the straws I will grasp at in an effort to describe the sound world of Tristan Perich‘s Surface Image. Perich specializes in 1-bit electronics, meaning electronic sounds that contain only a single piece of information, unlike, say, a synthesizer, where each note is a complex composite of different frequencies. Charmingly low tech and surprisingly… more »

yMusic, Balance Problems

Label: New Amsterdam

The New York-based sextet yMusic has quickly become the go-to ensemble in the so-called “indie classical” community. They have recently been championing the music of Arcade Fire’s Richard Reed Parry, and on Balance Problems they’ve assembled a collection of works from fellow shape-shifters like Nico Muhly and Sufjan Stevens.

The title track, by Nico Muhly — only 33 and already a seasoned veteran who’s written for the Met, the New York Philharmonic, Hollywood and Björk — offers Muhly’s engaging blend of minimalist rhythm patterns and… more »