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ClassicsOnline Home » BALL, L.: Imaginary Sitters / Imaginary Galaxies (Method Music) (Ball)
Method without Madness
Disc one is a set of short, five-minute Imaginary Portraits, created by feeding data about the subject into a computer, which then used the Method Music algorithms to convert them into sound.
The first track, Meher Baba Piece is a morphing variation on the opening to the Who's hit Baba O’Riley (did I mention Pete Townsend produced this release?). Almost as soon as the listener recognizes it, though, the theme starts to stretch and change.
The remaining portraits (ten out of a much larger set), are similar in structure. All are electronic works, and have a basically tonal structure. Superficially, they sound like the minimalist compositions of Steve Reich, with repeated motives gradually moving out of phase with each other. But there’s more to it than that.
Although I couldn’t say exactly what Method Music was, I could decidedly hear it at work. These pieces have an underlying logic to them that’s different than minimalism. And that logic is apparent throughout the pieces. This is highly organized music that’s moving towards a goal – although it’s getting there through an unfamiliar path. People who enjoy contemporary classical music as well as progressive and experimental rock should find common aesthetic ground in Imaginary Sitters.
Imaginary Galaxies, which makes up the second disc of the set, might appeal more to the classical rather than the rock listener. Although the compositional organization is the same, these are much larger and complex works. Each of the three pieces runs about twenty minutes. The pacing is slower, and the changes are more subtle. Timbre becomes more important, and if Imaginary Sitters were painted with primary colors, Imaginary Galaxies would be a wider spectrum of pastel and blended colors.more....
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