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Alga Marghen

NEUHAUS, MAX - The New York School: Nine Realizations of Cage, Feldman, Brown

2004 release. Previously-unreleased recordings, made 1964-1968. Different realizations than those featured on the Columbia LP Electronics and Percussion -- Five Realizations from 68. The term New York School" refers to a circle of composers in the 1950s who orbited around John Cage: Morton Feldman, Earle Brown, Christian Wolff and David Tudor, above all. Their music paralleled the music and events of the Fluxus group, and drew its name from the New York School of mostly Abstract Expressionist painters who had got their start in the 40s: Motherwell, Pollock, de Kooning, Rothko, and Kline. What brought these artists together was a faith in the liberation of the unconscious and an excitement drawn from the street energies of Manhattan. This compact disc offers multiple realizations by the solo percussionist Max Neuhaus of scores by three key members of the New York School: Earle Brown (three realizations of "Four Systems - For Four Amplified Cymbals," recorded between 1964 and 1968), Morton Feldman (three realizations of "King of Denmark," recorded between 1965 and 1968) and John Cage (one realization 64 and two realizations 65 of "2710.554""). All three composers conformed to the ethos of the 60s, not to the blend of hippie mysticism and pop commercialism that defined that decade towards its end, but to a broader notion of personal liberation. In this context Max Neuhaus was allowed to express himself, to revel in timbral color (including the use of electronics, as in the amplification of the cymbals in the Brown performances, or in the use of a FM tuner, of a self-built electronic mini-instrument or of a tape with concrète sounds in the Cage performances) and in giddy dialogues between notated compositional intention and performed expression. Each of the realizations on this disc is a valid response to the scores, yet each is different, almost a new piece of music. This edition includes a 16-page booklet with original photos and concert programs, Max Neuhaus own comments on the original scores, an editorial note by John Rockwell, and reviews by Malcolm Goldstein and Theodore Strongin." -Alga Marghen.

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