Reich: Music for 18 Musicians Original recording reissued
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The 1978 recording of Reich's seminal Music for 18 Musicians still astounds. Listeners aware of the talents of such bands as Tortoise or Gas or of DJs such as Vladislav Delay or Aphex Twin and fans of Warp records or the click, cut and glitch of recent post-techno could all do with checking out what continues to be vital source material. Lovers of Bach, Satie, Stravinsky, Nancarrow, Cage, Stockhausen, Budd, Eno or Phillip Glass will all find this a very special and rewarding listening experience.
Reich's 1970's Pulse work is often recalled as repetitive, which it unarguably is, but the artfulness, intricacy and the seamless layering of this beautiful piece is less often noted. Reich builds and deconstructs, endlessly moving what turns out to be not merely a work of huge intellect and technical skill but an emotional and complex and hugely satisfying piece of music. This is no post-Gamelan pose but a highly accomplished and stirring piece of music that deserves a lot more than cult status. --Mark Thwaite
Top Customer Reviews
This recording was made over twenty years after its composition. As such this recording has the benefit of experience (also played by Steve Reich).
This is a wonderful, refreshing recording of one of the most thrilling peices of minimalist music you are likely to hear.
The 'Pulse' contains the essence of the whole work, which is then elaborated on in the 'Sections' and the piece ends in much the same way as it began.
To label the work 'repetitive' would be an understatement, but also an unfair one. It is in it's repetition of themes and original musical ideas that this admittedly minimal work finds it's strengths.
The fact that the very modern sounding piece is played entirely acoustically, along with the almost unrecognisable (yet sublime) presence of four female voices both contribute greatly to a piece of music which should not be ignored.
That said, it won't be to everyone's tastes. The singularly unique style will inevitably bemuse as many people as it delights. It is not a mainstream piece of music, and so much better for that. My feeling is that it will appeal most to people who relish the subtle complexity that comes out of the interplay of simple elements, perhaps in particular those who are more analytically minded.
When you first listen to it you might be forgiven for thinking that 'nothing much really happens', and yet if you give it the space it deserves you'll discover that it is packed from start to finish with rich, rewarding detail which continuously evolves, stimulates and surprises. In a sense the many instuments each play in isolation, repeating their own simple pattern with little concession to traditional harmony or ensemble, and yet it is the implied patterns and interplay that comes from combining these elements that creates the rich sonic and rhythmic interest.
The best real-life analogy I can think of is the effect you get when you listen to a peel of church bells. After a while, if you're like me anyway, you become hypnotised and your brain starts to pick out subtle patterns implied by the shifting notes and accents. If you like that, you'll love this music.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An excellent Reich recording, lasting @58 minutes, if you like Reich you will love this - no breaks between parts ( as found on another earlier version) giving the work a natural... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Jack London
brilliant piece music...........no complaints at all.
also good service, came quickly
This CD is an extraordinary example of 'serial' music from the seventies. Admittedly, it sounds quite similar from start to finish, but that doesn't matter. Read morePublished 19 months ago by robert
I love the music of Philip Glass and when I first heard this I thought I had overlooked a new release by Glass