Drumming [1987]

Drumming [1987]

5.0 1
by Steve Reich
     
 

Simply put, Drumming is, along with some of Philip Glass' Einstein on the Beach, one of the most fascinating pieces of first-generation minimalism. The version recorded for Elektra/Nonesuch in 1987 ranks among Reich's masterpieces. The 60-minute continuous work features one basic rhythm pattern.See more details below

Overview

Simply put, Drumming is, along with some of Philip Glass' Einstein on the Beach, one of the most fascinating pieces of first-generation minimalism. The version recorded for Elektra/Nonesuch in 1987 ranks among Reich's masterpieces. The 60-minute continuous work features one basic rhythm pattern. Throughout four segued movements it is multiplied, played in canon on various percussion instruments. "Part I" is for four pairs of tuned bongo drums; "Part II" for three marimbas (played by nine players) and two singers mimicking the sound of marimbas; "Part III" for three glockenspiels, piccolo, and whistling (played by Reich himself); "Part IV" for all previous instruments, including voices. Transitions between movements are gradual, the whole piece being built on accumulation and reduction. When it is time to go to the next movement, players are slowly removed, quarter-notes replaced by rests, in order to make room for the new instruments. The piece almost comes to a complete halt at the end of "Part III," keeping only the most basic pulse before the whole process starts over, building up to the finale. On the original LP, "Part II" faded out before the end, resuming on side two so that the transition between "II" and "III" could be fully experienced. There is a sense of happiness and lightness irradiating from Drumming. It is a perfect example of the paradox of the simple and the complex, the easy and the challenging underlying minimalist music. Both cerebral and vitally tribal or ritualistic, this album is a must-have.

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Product Details

Release Date:
05/28/1992
Label:
Nonesuch
UPC:
0075597917024
catalogNumber:
79170

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Steve Reich   Primary Artist,Drums,Human Whistle,Track Performer
Evelyn Glennie   Percussion
Steve Chambers   Drums
Thad Wheeler   Drums,Glockenspiel,Marimbas
Russ Hartenberger   Drums
Garry Kvistad   Drums,Glockenspiel,Marimbas
James Preiss   Drums
Gary Schall   Drums,Glockenspiel,Marimbas
Phil Smith   Piano
Mort Silver   Piccolo
Pamela Wood Ambush   Voices
Timothy Ferchen   Drums

Technical Credits

Steve Reich   Producer,Liner Notes
Evelyn Glennie   Liner Notes
Paul Goodman   Engineer
Robert Hurwitz   Executive Producer
Bob Ludwig   Mastering
Ralph Mace   Producer
Mike Ross-Trevor   Engineer
Judith Sherman   Producer
J.J. Stelmach   Art Direction
Carin Goldberg   Art Direction

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