it is one of the latest compositions by Swiss-born wandelweiser composer Jürg Frey, who is notable to me as a composer of works that employ the playing of the piano in a sparse manner, as is this one.
"Extended Circular Music." Circles and Landscapes.
the notes of this work are clustered, and occur only together and only as individual units. in this piece it is as if all of the "other" music, the music that has always been there filling the spaces and filling the void, has been erased. here, all that remains are the pillars that kept everything standing upright - the fundamental memories. all of the memories you have of music can be condensed into these moments of music, these moments of the instrument that are so often overlooked. take away the dancers, the flickering lights on the stage, take away the institutions and you are left with almost no visual image... nothing to distract yourself from the pure absorption of sound moments.
i think a lot about time while listening to this, and to some of Frey's other piano pieces. time as a nonentity. time as fluidity, moldable and malleable. sound and music can easily have the ability to transport one to those places where our bodies cannot.
i have not written for this blog as often as i should, or as often as i used to. i do apologize. it is most unlike me.
i think the reason why it has gone so long without a single new post is because this blog directly correlated with my experiencing of music as a separate entity from "the rest of the world," which i would usually just call "life as i have come to know it, life as i did not choose for it to be." music became more than just an obsession, more than a hobby, more than something to listen to, even more than something to make. music was an element of life that allowed me to actually experience happiness. to enjoy my time alive, to make every second as great as it possibly could.
using music, i found so many dark places and incredible places that i could never access in my normal, everyday life. music opened my mind up to imagination, to knowledge, to love, to passion, to history, to true reality. in it there was always such possibility, such a promise for what life could be, and what many different emotions or feeeeelings there were to experience.
without wanting to be too vague, let me try to be more specific about what kinds of music i am talking about. i was part of a music community called Last.fm where finding new music was the whole point of the community. it was all about grabbing as much unique music as you could possibly find the time for, and listening to it all either for status or for true interest. some people wanted both. it was and i'm sure it still is a complete lifestyle, an every-day-after-school/-work and all-night activity for many people, including myself. i spent so many more hours exploring the different sounds of music than i ever spent getting to know my classmates or spending time with others my age outside. i can't even remember all of the genres i explored... music from every era and from all over the world; modern and ancient, traditional and revolutionary, political and poetic and instrumental and atmospheric and influential and underrated and extremely rare.
when i say "i listened to this album every single day for years in high school; i listened to this piece repetitively when i was younger; i couldn't get enough of this band throughout all those years"; it comes from a place that has now faded into the recesses of the mind but is just as powerful a memory as the first time i felt love deep in my being. music is a close friend, and not only an escape but a destination. i dislike hearing people dismiss the idea of wanting to find an escape solely because they assume it is a desire born of weakness. an escape is the traveling from reality into a secret place, a mythological place, a place that everyone always told you didn't exist.
the reason i am expounding on this is that i just now realized that music was all of this and more for me for so many years, so much of my growing adolescent life. and now i am entering new stages of my life.
this passion and this lifestyle are fading slowly away from me. this blog, included. the friends i've made and lost, the love merely a flame that is now all but gone - all are like grains of sand slipping through my fingers and being blown away by the winds of time. i only feel sorry about it all, i only look back with sadness for a few moments, and i am usually only reminded of them when i discover unexpectedly a single grain of that sand still stuck to me somewhere. i do not feel unhappy about who i am now. i do not feel scared or sad or like i have lost anything. in fact, i am very happy, and very content. in a very different way.
funny how life works, huh? :D
here is the latest from my friends Joshua Adam Acosta & Joe Wheeler - Differential, released on the speculations editions label. it is very rich and full and terrifying. something about the sound manipulation and combination here is very physical, almost tangible.
"every idea, extended into infinity, becomes its own opposite"
which is to say, anything is nothing and everything is hilarious and grotesque