alvin lucier Illuminated By the Moon (numbered 4 180g vinyl LP + CD + Book boxed set, £127.50)
Black Truffle together with Bernhard Rietbrock and ZHDK are honoured to reissue this stunning boxset celebrating Alvin Lucier’s 85th birthday celebrations which took place in Zurich, 2013. A worthy tribute to one of the last century’s most important composers, offering insight, recognition, and critical investigation, long overdue and lovingly produced. Including an extensive, lavish 120 page book, with numerous unseen images. This limited edition of 500 copies is unquestionably one of the most beautiful and important releases of 2018 Alvin Lucier is one of most important figures in more than a half century of avant-garde and experimental sound practice. He has no equivalent. He is among America’s most important composers – a towering pillar of intellect, creativity, and beauty realised through sound. His singular and unparalleled body of work, focused around acoustic phenomena and auditory perception, which included, among many others, the groundbreaking works Bird And Person Dyning, Music On A Long Thin Wire, and I Am Sitting In A Room, each quietly shifting the understanding of what music could be – deceptively discrete gestures, laying their mark on history and the expectations of nearly everything to come, while radically expanding the field. It is such a life, defined by such striking accomplishment, which this release celebrates across the four LPs, CD, and book which make up the lavish Illuminated by the Moon release. Recorded in October of 2016 at the Alvin Lucier 85th Birthday Festival at the Zurich University of the Arts, the box gathers a remarkable range of performances of works from Lucier’s life in music, from the iconic to the lesser known. It begins with wonderful stagings of I Am In A Sitting Room and Music For Solo Performer performed by the composer, before presenting the work Charles Curtis performed by the cellist for whom it was composed, and Double Rainbow, a recent work, performed by the incredible Joan La Barbara. Over the course of the set’s many discs, we encounter works ranging from Nothing Is Real (Strawberry Fields Forever), Braid, Two Circles, Hanover, Step, Slide And Sustain, and One Arm Bandits, performed by Oren Ambarchi, Stephen O’Malley, and Gary Schmalzl, with further contributions by Charles Curtis and many others involved in the celebrations of Lucier’s life and work. The collection, by offering an expanse of material otherwise unavailable in the composer’s discography, opens a rare window into the breadth and range of territory which he has approached, as well as into the unique humour which has quietly bubbled through his entire career. It is a singular recording event, the likes of which are unlikely to be repeated. Tracklisting: LP 1 Side A: I Am Sitting in a Room (1970) for voice and electromagnetic tape / Alvin Lucier, performer / Hauke Harder, assistant. 18:20 min. Side B: Music for Solo Performer (1965) for enormously amplified brain waves and percussion / Alvin Lucier, brain waves / Hauke Harder and Daniel Wolf, assistants. 24:06 min. LP 2 Side A: Charles Curtis (2002) for cello with slow sweep pure wave oscillators / Charles Curtis, cello. 13:40 min. Side B: Double Rainbow (2016) for voice and slow sweep pure wave oscillator / Joan La Barbara, voice. (world premiere) 12:08 min Nothing is Real (Strawberry Fields Forever) (1990) for piano, amplfied teapot, tape recorder, and miniature sound system / Johannes Herrmann, piano. 8:21 min. LP 3 Side A: Braid (2012) for alto ute, clarinet, English horn, and string quartet / Felix Profos, conductor / Patrycja Pakiela, alto ute / Soraya Dos Santos, clarinet / Megumi Nakajima, English horn / Nora Peterhans and Cécile Vonderwahl, violin / Tabea Frei, viola / Nadja Reich, cello. (European premiere) 16:00 min. Side B: Two Circles (2012) for flute, B-flat clarinet, violin, cello, and piano / Felix Profos, conductor / Patrycja Pakiela, flute / Soraya Dos Santos, clarinet / Nora Peterhans, violin / Nadja Reich, cello / Lora-Evelin Vakova, piano. 17:52 min. LP 4 Side A: Hanover (2015) for violin, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, three banjos (three e-guitars), piano, and bowed vibraphone / Ever Present Orchestra: Lars Mlekusch, conductor / Rebecca Thies, violin / Charles Ng, alto saxophone / Joan Jordi Oliver Arcos, tenor saxophone / Oren Ambarchi, Stephen O’Malley, Gary Schmalzl, electric guitar / Felix Profos, piano / Anthony Burr, bowed vibraphone. (European premiere) 18:06 min. Side B: Step, Slide and Sustain (2014) for horn in F, cello, and piano / Retro Disco: Samuel Stoll, horn / Moritz Muellenbach, cello / Simone Keller, piano. (world premiere) 14:55 min. CD: One Arm Bandits (2016) for four cellos / Charles Curtis, TJ Borden, Judith Hamann, Reynard Rott, cello. 60:09 min. BOOK: 12x12”, 118 pages, richly illustrated, with numerous unseen images, various essays and an extensive overview of Lucier’s work from the 1960’s to present. Editor: Bernhard Rietbrock Design: Krispin Heé and Samuel Bänziger. Mastered & Cut by Helmut Erler at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin. + DL.
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