For alto flute, bass clarinet, vibraphone/crotales, piano, violin, ‘cello, and electronic sounds. 11:45
Commissioned by the Seattle Chamber Players and the California EAR Unit.
“Inspired by James Turrell’s ethereal installation art, Adams’ thick and undulating wall-of-sound approach suggests a musical corollary to Turrell’s sublime manipulations of time, space and color.” - Josef Woodard, The Los Angeles Times
“… the standout work of the festival … a shimmering spectrum of massive, merging harmonies … the textures of noise as our contemporary counterpart to the sublime.” - Thomas May, Seattle Weekly
“…a shimmering, minimalist, impressionistic landscape of sound: rolling waves from the piano, gentle whooshes from the percussion, augmented by an occasional loud groan from the computer.” - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
For celesta, harp (or piano), 2 vibraphones, string quartet. 18:00
Commissioned by the Third Angle New Music Ensemble.
“Adams’ music made the unseen visible, like breath exhaled into frosty air, a bodilessness pulsing with life. His rising and falling themes, traded among the strings, built a prayerful melodic arc that stretched out to infinity yet spoke directly to the individual soul.” - Grant Menzies, The Oregonian (Portland)
For violin, vibraphone, piano, sustaining keyboard, contrabass instrument. 30:00
<a href="../front/recordings/35">Recorded on Cold Blue Music</a>.
“…an unbroken, slowly shifting, many-hued sound texture… frequently energized by internal ripples and coruscations… the discipline imposed by the work’s own internal structures has the effect of disclosing, within the sound mass, particular dimensions of power, range and beauty…” - Christopher Ballantine, International Record Review
“I’m working as a fire lookout on Aztec Peak in Arizona. Used to work same job on N. Rim of Grand Canyon. Your musical evocation of the hermit thrush, common to both places, moved me to tears.” - Edward Abbey, Letter, July 1978
“…one of the most sensitive reworkings of birdsong since Messiaen’s.” - Ear Magazine
” …exquisitely gentle evocations of wilderness sounds… songbirdsongs transformed the auditorium into the aural equivalent of some enchanted forest…The effect was musical magic.” - News and Courier/Evening Post (Charleston, S.C.)
“…uncanny… songbirdsongs is a beautiful recording.” - John Schafer, NPR
“…charm and a real feeling for the nature of nature’s music.” - Eric Salzman, Stereo Review
“un monde d’enchantement sonore, vibrant de mystere et de poesie.” - Le Devoir (Montreal)
John Luther Adams inspires us not only to listen more attentively, but to be more aware of the world in which we live. This … book … should not only be on the shelves of everyone interested in the music of our time but also anyone interested in being alive. -