I’ve spent a quiet Sunday afternoon recording some mellow music. Here are the fruits of my labours:
Last week it was my privelege and pleasure to perform in two concerts of new music for saxophones at St. Mary-at-Hill Church near Monument and the Royal Academy of Music. Joining the incredible Inflexio Duo from the Royal College of Music, I played alto sax in a piece for quartet written by my friend and fellow composer Robert Laidlow.
Rob’s Programme Note
The Light of the Trees for saxophone quartet forms one of many pieces I have written recently based on other-worldly and fantastical stimuli. Each of the three movements relates to a different image drawn by artists Alan Lee, Ted Nasmith and John Howe of scenes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s quasi-mythological posthumous opus The Silmarillion. From a more technical viewpoint, the piece aims to explore all sides of the saxophone quartet, from the many timbres that extended techniques can offer, heard in the first two movements, to the rhythmic and textural dexterity for which the saxophone is so famous.
My (Unauthorised) Programme Note
In the beginning there is only a primordial ooze, a mute soup, evolving into the dawn of biology as chords emerge, uneasy with one another, growing in complexity. Now life has grown legs. The first animals are born and begin to walk, a growing sense of movement meeting Stravinskian-flavoured aggression as brutish dinosaurs stalk and snarl.