Two Upcoming Albums

TWO UPCOMING ALBUMS

Two new additions to my discography will appear soon; both of them probably appearing within the next month.

The first album is Three Analog Dances, Night Shift, & Other Works: Electronic Music (Volume VI).

(front cover artwork for Three Analog Dances, Night Shift, & Other Works: Electronic Music (Volume VI)

The music for this album has already been recorded, and the artwork almost completed. However, in order to avoid as much as possible reissuing this album in the future for reasons similar to those which led me to reissue many of me earlier albums late last year and earlier this year, I’m being more careful with the curation of material on this and on future albums.

While this album is a collection, certainly, I’m aiming for more of an album feel; that is to say, a unified concept and deliberate presentation of material, rather than its being a collection of independent works. In many ways, putting together a good album – with the artwork, and the tracks arranged to their best effect – is not unlike composing, really.

To a degree, this (i.e., creating a collection that has more the character of an album than a compilation) will not be as much of a challenge as earlier Electronic Music Works volumes may have been, insofar as the works featured on this album were all composed and recorded at roughly the same time. I was in the same “headspace” during the composing and recording of each track, as it were.

At this point, the album has sixteen tracks, so I may reduce the tracks to eleven or twelve, depending on the presentation of the material, and what I believe will make for the most satisfying listening experience.

The second album that will be released in the near future is the collaboration which I’ve discussed in previous articles.

The artwork for this album has already been prepared. At this time I’m finishing recording the last two pieces, and continuing to make corrections to the previously recorded tracks – and trying to ensure optimal playback quality.

Making corrections to recordings of this complexity sometimes feels like playing Jenga; making one small correction, removing one bit of material, sometimes requires having to start over again – not necessarily because a mistake was made in so doing, but because the slight change sometimes casts the entire recording in a different light than what one intended, and thus changes/adjustments are necessary in order to recover the originally desired effect.

At least one of the pieces in this collection utilizes sampled Bulgarian women’s choir music. If you have never heard this unique and fascinating musical tradition, I hope you will check out the this recording:

OTHER UPDATES

At this time I’m already considering what projects I might like to tackle, as it were, after I complete the two above-mentioned albums. I’m presently working on a several compositions. These include some organ music – among which is a prelude based on an ancient Armenian “Kyrie” chant – piano music, and two chamber works.

Since most of my work at this time is not commissioned, I can compose what I wish to compose. While I want to add to the parts of my catalog that are underrepresented (e.g., chamber music), I probably won’t spend too much time in these particular genres, simply because there is, at this time, little demand for them (from me, at least). Thus, should I compose such works, the chances of their being performed and recorded is not that great. If I compose an organ or piano piece, I can be reasonably sure that I will eventually have a recording of it. If no one else records it, I can record it myself. (In fact, most of the recordings of my piano works are recordings of my performing those works.) If I compose a film score or an electronic piece, I record those pieces myself. In other words, these kinds of works can be presented/published almost right away, rather than awaiting discovery online. I try to always keep these things in mind when I begin considering projects outside those with which I normally occupy myself.

I’m reminded of something I remember hearing Philip Glass once say in an interview. The interviewer was asking Glass about his extensive work in theater music; theater music being where his work first became well-known. Glass responded by saying something to the effect that “People in the theater were the ones who wanted my music. The New York Philharmonic wasn’t beating down my door, asking me to compose symphonies for them.”


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