Electric Counterpoint

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  • Created by: 11Clewj1
  • Created on: 10-04-15 20:00
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  • Electric Counterpoint - Steve Riech
    • Context
      • First performed in 1987 and is one of three movements which follow a typical fast-slow-fast pattern.
      • Written in a minimalism style, which repetition of simple ideas, layered textures, diatonic harmonies, slow harmonic rhythms and little variation in instrumentation
    • Instrumentation
      • One live guitar, 7 guitars and 2 bass guitars. the live guitar is amplified to blend in with the backing tape
    • Structure
      • Builds up in 3 layers
        • 1) a syncopated quaver motif, introduced one part at a time
          • after all 3 layers have been built up, layers 2 and 3 fade out leaving layer 1 to continue till it comes to a ret on a held chord
        • 2) a new syncopated quaver motif introduced in the bass guitars
          • after all 3 layers have been built up, layers 2 and 3 fade out leaving layer 1 to continue till it comes to a ret on a held chord
        • 3) a more sustained motif which is built up around 3 chords
      • Melody
        • the melody is made up of a 1 bar motif (ostinato), this motif is introduced by the live guitar and top 4 guitar parts at different times creating canon
          • note addition is used to make the piece more interesting and to form a resultant melody
      • Texture
        • Contrapuntal texture
      • Tonality and Harmony
        • Binary form (AB) with 4 sections within them. the entire piece with a coda, there is tonal ambiguity but there are hints of being E minor but is uncertain till the bass guitars come in.

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