Ori Barel: Centrifugal Force for Player Piano (Albany/digital outlets)

 |   |  1 min read

Centrifugal Force Part 2
Ori Barel: Centrifugal Force for Player Piano (Albany/digital outlets)

We expect by now few people come to Elsewhere expecting the always-familiar, so this album by American composer Ori Barel for player piano is one for those prepared for something elsewhere.

Inspired by robotic art, the speed of technology and the musical reach from concert hall to free jazz, Barel has created “programmes” for the player piano using algorithms which created musical miniatures of varying speeds and lengths which are then compiled into what sound like performance pieces.

But of course, as you may hear, some are so rapid that no human hands could realise them.

The player piano can however.

So these four pieces – all around 10 minutes long – exist in that boundary between the concert hall and the sound lab, and music which is acoustic but influenced by electronics.

There is enormous drama here when the pieces become dense or furiously fast, but the composer's art is to also allow for space, notably here in the second part where the vigorous workouts for player piano are akin to Cecil Taylor on speed and there are short breathing spaces between.

Part 3 is more measured and less breathless (mostly) and sounds more like a witty human actually playing the piano.

It's likely this will most appeal to free jazz aficionados with plenty of familiar miles behind them, or those who can appreciate the mathematical nature of these muscular pieces.


If that sounds like you then you can hear Centrifugal Force for Player Piano at Spotify here



Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Jim White: Where It Hits You (Yep Roc)

Jim White: Where It Hits You (Yep Roc)

The idiosyncratic Jim White – whose music is suffused in the dark Southern literary tradition as much as alt.country (more alt than most alt.country) -- was the central figure in the... > Read more

Karen Elson: The Ghost Who Walks (XL)

Karen Elson: The Ghost Who Walks (XL)

As you may already know, Karen Elson from England comes with a number of black marks against her on this debut album: she was a model (and no one takes them seriously, huh?) and her husband is Jack... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Central Australian Outback: And miles to go before I sleep

Central Australian Outback: And miles to go before I sleep

Somewhere about 300km southwest of Alice Springs on a largely featureless strip of the Lasseter Highway I slow down for the laughably named Mount Ebenezer. It is little more than another... > Read more

PETER ACKROYD INTERVIEWED ABOUT HIS DEFINITIVE CHARLES DICKENS BIOGRAPHY 1991

PETER ACKROYD INTERVIEWED ABOUT HIS DEFINITIVE CHARLES DICKENS BIOGRAPHY 1991

It was an afternoon in June 1846 when Charles Dickens finally broke the writing block which had been troubling him. It had been two years since his previous novel, but these last weeks present... > Read more