Steve Reich - 3rd movement (fast) from Electric Counterpoint

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When was this piece composed?
1987
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What style of music is this piece?
Minimalism
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What are some minimalist techniques used in Electric Counterpoint?
Ostinati/loops, metrical displacement, layered texture, note addition, metamorphosis, resultant melody, diatonic harmony, cells/short motifs
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What key is this piece written in?
E minor
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What is the time signature of this piece?
Changes between 3/2 and 12/8 (polymetre)
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What is the structure of this piece?
No formal structure, could be described as ternary form - A-B-Coda. Main sections divided into four smaller sections, sections defined by a change in key and texture
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What is tempo of this piece?
192 BPM
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What is the instrumentation of this piece?
10 guitars - live guitar, 7 pre-recorded guitar tracks, 2 pre-recorded bass guitar tracks
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What is the rhythm like in the piece?
Little rhythmic variety, mainly repeated complex patterns of quavers, syncopation, metrical displacement (same motif but start in different parts of the bar/out of sync), rhythmic counterpoint, changes metre between 3/2 and 12/8 in B section
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What is the harmony/tonality like in the piece?
Beginning of piece is tonally ambiguous, bass guitars affirm the E minor key, modulates to C major and back to E minor regularly, no D sharps to affirm the key, modal: aeolian mode transposed to E
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What is the texture like in the piece? (1)
Contrapuntal mainly, builds up in layers - starts with 1 guitar (monophonic), adds live guitar (heterophonic), adds guitars 2-4 play metrically displaced riff, then bass guitars 1 and 2, then guitars 5-7 play chords and drop out before the bass fades
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What is the texture like in this piece? (2)
When all parts are added, texture remains constant, interlocking rhythms, thins out at the end, use of broken chords
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What are the dynamics like in this piece?
No dynamic change, parts fade in and out, loud/soft determined by number of instruments playing
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What is the melody like in this piece?
Made up of cells being looped and interlocking in the 4 part guitar canon - creates the resultant melody played by the live guitar. Motifs grow slowly/metamorphosis through note addition. New idea (strumming chords) in bar 36
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Card 2

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What style of music is this piece?

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Minimalism

Card 3

Front

What are some minimalist techniques used in Electric Counterpoint?

Back

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Card 4

Front

What key is this piece written in?

Back

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Card 5

Front

What is the time signature of this piece?

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