Tag Archives: Contemporary Classical

Best of Bandcamp Contemporary Classical: August 2019

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The taxonomy of contemporary classical music—new music, contemporary music, whatever you want to call it—is a thorny issue. But every two months, we’ll take a look at some of the best composer-driven music to surface here on Bandcamp, that which makes room for electronic experimentation, improvisation, and powerful takes on old classics. Continue reading

Best of Bandcamp Contemporary Classical: June 2019

The taxonomy of contemporary classical music—new music, contemporary music, whatever you want to call it—is a thorny issue. But every two months, we’ll take a look at some of the best composer-driven music to surface here on Bandcamp, that which makes room for electronic experimentation, improvisation, and powerful takes on old classics.

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Best of Bandcamp Contemporary Classical: April 2019

Classical_Store_April-1244The taxonomy of contemporary classical music—new music, contemporary music, whatever you want to call it—is a thorny issue. But every two months, we’ll take a look at some of the best composer-driven music to surface here on Bandcamp, that which makes room for electronic experimentation, improvisation, and powerful takes on old classics. Continue reading

Album of the Day: Caroline Shaw & Attacca Quartet, “Orange”

On Orange, composer Caroline Shaw shares new works for string quartet: a stirring program built around the five-part “Plan & Elevation” suite. Dealing imaginatively with the traditional string quartet format (much as she did with the choral tradition on her Pulitzer Prize-winning Partita for 8 Voices), Shaw offers a tour of what she calls her “garden.” Orange is a reference to the fruit, not the color, and the ways we find wonder in endless encounters with the same object. As Shaw puts it in her liner notes, “the thousandth orange that you eat is just as extraordinary as the first.” Continue reading

Album of the Day: Jeremy Dutcher,“Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa”

Toronto-based Jeremy Dutcher, a member of the Tobique First Nation reserve in New Brunswick, is a vocalist and composer whose background includes studies as an operatic tenor, training as an ethnomusicologist, and an apprenticeship with Maggie Paul, a Passamaquoddy elder and song carrier. His stunning debut album, Wolastoqiyik Lintuwakonawa, is a breathtaking exploration of water-themed songs created by his people, the Wolastoqiyik—the People of the Beautiful River—which were originally recorded on 1907 wax cylinders and had languished, forgotten, and collecting dust in a museum collection. Paul recommended that Dutcher find the recordings, and he first began using them to learn the songs and practice his Wolastoq, a severely endangered language on the verge of extinction.

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The “Lowercase Music” Genre is Ambient at Its Most Minimal

Loof-2-smallPasadena sound artist Steve Roden, the composer most associated with the subset of minimal ambient music known as “lowercase,” characterizes it as music that “bears a certain sense of quiet and humility; it does not demand attention, it must be discovered. [The] work might imply one thing on the surface but contain other things beneath… it’s the opposite of capital letters—loud things which draw attention to themselves.”

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Album of the Day: Caleb Burhans, “Past Lives”

New York composer and multi-instrumentalist Caleb Burhans is a man of contrasts. He’s a self-described agnostic with a passion for sacred music (he has a history of singing in church choirs). He’s a composer who creates noncommercial music for his own projects, but has worked with popular comics of late-night TV (including Stephen Colbert and David Letterman). And, as a musician, he’s been known to adapt his talents for any style, performing in orchestras, ambient ensembles, rock bands, and disco groups, among other settings. Continue reading

Best of Bandcamp Contemporary Classical: February 2019

contemporary classicalThe taxonomy of contemporary classical music—new music, contemporary music, whatever you want to call it—is a thorny issue. But every two months, we’ll take a look at some of the best composer-driven music to surface here on Bandcamp, that which makes room for electronic experimentation, improvisation, and powerful takes on old classics. Continue reading