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Rand Steiger: A Menacing Plume

Composer(s): Rand Steiger
Album Title: Rand Steiger: A Menacing Plume 
Cat. No.: 80747
Genre: Classical / Contemporary
Release Date: 04/2014
 
Description: Talea Ensemble

The vast array of compositional, performative, and listening practices that have grown out of the phenomenon we can collectively refer to as "electronic music" have, in some way or another, engaged with an inherent and essential provocation: the coexistence of "artificial" technology with more "organic" resonances of musical tradition and human experience. A truly symbiotic relationship between technology and acoustics can alert us to the fact that what we might think of as "natural" tastes are, in fact, just as "artificial" as processes of digital signal manipulation and re-synthesis. For Rand Steiger (b. 1957), technology is such a vehicle into the beyond. The five pieces presented here - in magnificent performances by the Talea Ensemble under the leadership of James Baker - span a decade of work in a variety of media, from solo to small mixed ensemble, some including live processing and others "purely" acoustical. But networks of commonality between the works are quickly apparent - Steiger's keen ear for deep, shimmering textures, sweeping timbral migrations, delicate nuances of intonation, and rich harmonic refrains unite the music into a grande oeuvre of flexible interdependence between the natural and the unnatural, with technology forming the essential basis for resonance and coalescence. 

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