electrocd

Track listing detail

Lexicon

Andrew Lewis / Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 2012
  • Duration: 16:35
  • Form: videomusic
  • Instrumentation: video and 8-channel fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • ISWC: T9093340397

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310016

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

Lexicon is based on a poem written by a 12-year old boy, Tom, in which he tries to articulate his personal experience of dyslexia. By presenting an imaginary sonic and visual journey through the text of the poem, Lexicon explores not only the challenges, but also the life-affirming creative potential that dyslexia, and a fuller understanding of it, can bring.

As part of the creative process the composer has worked with a team of dyslexia experts from the Miles Dyslexia Centre at Bangor University (Wales, UK), which has enabled the composition of the piece to draw inspiration from recent research in the field. In particular it makes use of a growing body of evidence that suggests that, for many people with dyslexia, a deficit in phonological processing (accessing and analyzing speech sounds, and also linking them to letters) is more significant than that in visual or attentional processing on their own.

This contradicts the popular but less well supported notion that dyslexia is primarily about difficulties in seeing letters and words on the page. Accordingly, Lexicon is a work conceived primarily with sound as its raw material, with the visual aspect conveying a metaphorical rather than scientific view of the experience of dyslexia.

[viii-13]


Lexicon was realized in 2012 in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of Bangor University (Wales, UK) with additional material developed at the Centro Mexicano para la Música y las Artes Sonoras (CMMAS) (Morelia, Mexico) and the composer’s studio. The work premiered on October 28, 2012 during the MANTIS Fall 2012 concert series at Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall of The University of Manchester (UK). Lexicon was realized with support from the Wellcome Trust’s “Engaging Science” programme, which aims to use artistic creation as a means of raising public awareness of biomedical science. Thanks to the Science Team: Dr Markéta Caravolas, Director, Miles Dyslexia Centre, Bangor University, Meg Browning, and Ann Cooke. Thanks to Tom Barbor-Might (author of the poem), James Bowers, Michael O’Boyle, Esme Lewis, Martha Lewis, Jenny Mainwaring, and Damien Vadgama, recorded voice.

Premiere

  • October 28, 2012, MANTIS Fall Festival 2012: Concert 3, Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall — Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama — The University of Manchester, Manchester (England, UK)

Preparation

Composition

Mastering

  • 2013-08

Dark Glass

Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 2009-11, 13
  • Duration: 13:50
  • Instrumentation: 8-channel fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • ISWC: T9167622368

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310017

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

“… what we will be has not yet been made known…” (1 John 3:2)

When a piece of glass breaks its physical structure is broken, degraded, and ultimately destroyed; but at the same time its liberated fragments are able to resonate with a new music, a unique harmony which was always present in the original pane, but which could only be freed through the act of destruction. Since each piece breaks in a different way, the resulting pattern of pitches and resonances is always unique, and since the fragments add up to the same total surface area as the original pane, there is a subtle and beautiful logic to the way these harmonies are constructed: larger, lower pitched fragments perfectly balanced by smaller, higher pitched ones. Thus a kaleidoscopic variety of colour and beauty emerges from panes of glass which appeared uniform and commonplace, a unique and personal song which only death itself can bring to light.

[viii-13]


Dark Glass was realized between 2009 and ’11, and revised in ’13, in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of Bangor University (Wales, UK) and premiered on October 28, 2011 during the MANTIS Festival at the Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall of The University of Manchester (UK). Thanks to staff at Hughes Glass in Llandygai (Wales, UK), and to colleagues Guto Puw, Stephanie Marriott, and Steve Marriott for providing materials to be liberated.

Premiere

  • October 28, 2011, Andrew Lewis, diffusion • MANTIS Fall Festival 2011: Concert 1, Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall — Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama — The University of Manchester, Manchester (England, UK)

Awards

Composition

Revision

Ascent

Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 1994, 97
  • Duration: 11:43
  • Instrumentation: 8-channel fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • Commission: BEAST with support from West Midlands Arts
  • ISWC: T0103480063

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310018

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

Although the piece began its life as essentially abstract in conception, work on Ascent took an unexpected turn as the music gradually acquired unmistakable resonances of the landscape of the Snowdonian setting in which it was composed. This process was initiated by the nature of the opening sounds of the piece, which were the first to be developed. Their powerful rising and falling contours are strongly suggestive of both the shape and the mass of mountainous forms, and the long time-base of their evolutions evokes something of the static expansiveness of the view of mountains, sky and open sea which dominates the Bangor studio.

An impressive aspect of mountainous landscapes is the way that their static, near-changeless forms can appear to be in constant and drastic metamorphosis as the position of the observer and the viewing conditions change. In Ascent this phenomenon finds musical parallels, with the same musical structures being constantly reviewed and re-explored. The effect is that of perceiving the same set of musical objects from different viewpoints, or in different lights: at first from a distance, as a panorama; then as if approaching and passing through a landscape rendered in sound. Beyond every turn of the musical discourse lies yet another view of the same familiar material, but perhaps framed by unfamiliar surroundings, or perceived in some new relationship with what has gone before.

As with the earlier Scherzo (1992, 93), Ascent moves freely across a spectrum of musical approaches, from the purely abstract to the more cinematic: at one extreme, the exploration of texture and of static pitch structures dominates; in the middle ground, evocations of irregular rock formations, undulating topography and large geological masses are prevalent; while at its most representational, important ideas are the elements, flight and the images that the name Eryri — the Welsh name for Snowdonia; Eryr the Welsh word for eagle — might suggest.

[viii-13]


Ascent was realized between February and November 1994, and revised in 1997, in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of Bangor University (Wales, UK) and premiered on December 4, 1994 during the rumours… concert series produced by BEAST at the Midlands Arts Centre (Birmingham, UK). The piece was commissioned by BEAST for its rumours… concert series with support from West Midlands Arts. Ascent was awarded a prize at the 24th Bourges International Electroacoustic Music Competition (France, 1997) where it was later awarded an Euphonie d’or in 2004.

Premiere

  • December 4, 1994, Rumours… 94: Concert 1, Foyle Studio — Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham (England, UK)

Awards

Composition

Revision

Mastering

  • 2013-08

Time and Fire

Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 1987-90, 2013
  • Duration: 13:45
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • ISWC: T0114379826

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310019

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

To Bethany

Time and Fire represents a quest for a more complex and evolutionary language capable of sustaining its argument over longer stretches of time. This has led to a highly intense musical fabric which presents the listener with a very rapid turnover of material, but less in the way of obvious structural signposts. The musical ideas are seldom more than momentary, flaring up brightly for a time, only to be consumed by those coming after.

The stabilizing influence offsetting this inferno of ideas is the regular division of time — the concept of pulse, whether manifested as the periodic repetition of individual sound events or the internal micro-pulses within the spectral evolutions of the sounds themselves. Much of the most complex material in the work is underpinned by a subtle but tangible ‘beat’ which determines the placing of the main events and creates the possibility of expressive changes of tempo. It is this regular division of “time” upon which hang the apparent complexities of the white-hot surface of the music — the “fire.”

[vii-13]


Time and Fire was realized between 1987 and ’90 in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of the University of Birmingham (UK) and premiered on September 12, 1990 during the International Computer Music Conference (ICMC ’90) at the Stevenson Hall of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow (Scotland, UK). Time and Fire was awarded Second Prize at the 19th Bourges International Electroacoustic Music Competition (France, 1991).

Premiere

  • September 12, 1990, ICMC 1990: Concert, Stevenson Hall — Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow (Scotland, UK)

Awards

Composition

Revision

  • 2013-08

Cân

Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 1997
  • Duration: 11:51
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • Commission: SAN with support from The Arts Council of England
  • ISWC: T0109656098

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310020

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

To John Harper

Cân (song, in Welsh) is a musical distillation of Wales, its people, language, landscape, and culture (particularly its musical culture). For the most part, the substance of Cân is made up of sounds which relate very much to the stereotypical image of Wales: harps, male-voice choirs, folk-singing and fiery preaching, though there are some less familiar sounds (for example, pibgorn playing, or the slow fracturing of mountain ice-sheets). The challenge was to press on beyond the picture-postcard surface into the ‘reality’ of Wales and Welshness. In doing so, the music enters a realm that is far more complex and diverse than the simplistic concepts of ‘nation’ or ‘nationality’ might seem to allow.

[x-13]


Cân was realized in 1997 in the Electroacoustic Music Studios of Bangor University (Wales, UK) and premiered on January 9, 1998 during the Sonic Arts Network Conference, in Birmingham (UK). The piece was commissioned by the Sonic Arts Network (SAN) for its 1998 UK tour with support from The Arts Council of England. Thanks to Rachel Ley (harp), Miriam Ley (voice), Stephen Rees (pibgorn). Cân was a finalist at the 5th Prix international Noroit-Léonce Petitot (Arras, France, 1997).

Premiere

  • January 9, 1998, Sonic Arts Network Conference, University of Birmingham, Birmingham (England, UK)

Composition

Mastering

  • 2013-08

Scherzo

Andrew Lewis

  • Year of composition: 1992, 93
  • Duration: 8:18
  • Instrumentation: fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • ISWC: T9247786885

Stereo

ISRC CAD501310021

  • 44,1 kHz, 16 bits

To the Stars

Recordings of my three daughters’ voices together with some of their more musical toys provide the main source material for this celebration of — or lament for — childhood.

In their untransformed states these two pools of material form the poles of the work between which the music voyages over a variety of routes. Occasionally the journey is straightforward, children transforming directly into toys or vice versa, but more often the music follows a more meandering path, passing through transitory, equatorial realms in which the original sources are less discernible.

At such times, and for the greater part of the piece, it is the pure musicality of the material which is being explored, rather than its poetic or anecdotal possibilities, although suggestions of the fleeting transience of youth, the fragility of childhood innocence and the bitter-sweet remembrance of times past are never very far below the surface.

[viii-13]


Scherzo was realized in the spring of 1992, and revised during the summer of 1993, at the Electroacoustic Music Studios of the University of Birmingham (UK) and premiered on June 29, 1992 at the Concert Room of the University of East Anglia in Norwich (UK). Scherzo was awarded a commendation in the Prix Ars Electronica (Linz, Austria, 1993), and an Honorable Mention in the Stockholm Electronic Arts Award (Sweden, 1994).

Premiere

  • June 29, 1992, Concert, Concert Room — School of Music — University of East Anglia, Norwich (England, UK)

Awards

Composition

Revision

Mastering

  • 2013-08