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In the Fog (Download)

duet for keyboard percussion
Level: Med-Advanced
Duration: 6:45
Personnel: 2 players
Release Date: 2019
Product ID : TSPCD19-004DL
Price: $28.00
Item #: TSPCD19-004DL

Formats Available:


Description

While created primarily out of improvisation, Aaron Locklear’s In the Fog explores two areas of growth in his compositional style: the use of mathematically deduced rhythmic patterns, as well as the use of intervallic symmetry within a tonal context. This collaboration of improvisatory and mathematical material creates a sophisticated inner structure housed within a tuneful casing of easy listening. As with all of his pieces, the title is drawn from his season of life during the writing process. While not written with a concrete program in mind, Aaron believes his life experiences during that time naturally found a way to manifest in the music.

Instrumentation

Celeste*

Vibraphone

Marimba—(low C)

*Glockenspiel may be used as a substitution.

Reviews

Aaron Locklear has created a piece of easy listening that gives a combined sense of improvisation and slight rhythmic unease that will keep the audience interested and the performers extremely focused. “In the Fog” is aptly named due to its rhythmic ambiguity. Throughout its beginning section, it utilizes several different time signatures along with syncopated and three-over- four rhythms that obscure the pulse. However, the melodies and harmonies created, along with the gentleness of which they are instructed to be played, makes the work pleasant to the ear.

The piece opens with the marimba blocking a Cmaj7 chord in eighth-note groupings, seeming to set up a rhythmic and harmonic foundation. The vibraphone enters, playing what sounds to be improvised melodic ideas over the given sonority, creating the character of harmonic agreement, but rhythmic ambiguity. This segues directly into the first major section of the work, outlined by the marimba outlining harmonies in intricate rhythmic gestures, and the vibraphone playing melodic material with different rhythmic ideas. The element that helps this work sound slightly enigmatic is that Locklear bases most of the music in sixteenth notes and the occasional triplet. Were he to use anything more complex, the ambiguity would be replaced by confusion.

The middle section of the work is a bit slower and incorporates more rhythmic agreement from the performers. Here, both players serve as accompanists and the main voice, as both provide the harmony by oscillating between two notes with one hand and playing melodic material in the other. The marimba initiates the melodic gestures, while the second player echoes each gesture on the celeste. The composer states that a glockenspiel can be substituted for the celeste, but considering the speed and frequency, the performer will need to switch between the instruments; this substitution will make playing the piece noticeably more challenging. The final section of the work is in the same character as the first: rhythmically ambiguous while pleasing harmonically.

This is a beautiful piece of music. It has its technical difficulties along with the rhythmic ones, including the need to switch quickly from vibes to celeste with one hand, and a frequently used double-lateral grace-note technique that is required from both players. However, in the hands of mature keyboardists who strive to make the instruments lyrical as well as rhythmically accurate, this work can be enjoyed by any- one who hears it.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes 
Vol. 58, No. 2, April 2020

Description

While created primarily out of improvisation, Aaron Locklear’s In the Fog explores two areas of growth in his compositional style: the use of mathematically deduced rhythmic patterns, as well as the use of intervallic symmetry within a tonal context. This collaboration of improvisatory and mathematical material creates a sophisticated inner structure housed within a tuneful casing of easy listening. As with all of his pieces, the title is drawn from his season of life during the writing process. While not written with a concrete program in mind, Aaron believes his life experiences during that time naturally found a way to manifest in the music.

Instrumentation

Celeste*

Vibraphone

Marimba—(low C)

*Glockenspiel may be used as a substitution.

Reviews

Aaron Locklear has created a piece of easy listening that gives a combined sense of improvisation and slight rhythmic unease that will keep the audience interested and the performers extremely focused. “In the Fog” is aptly named due to its rhythmic ambiguity. Throughout its beginning section, it utilizes several different time signatures along with syncopated and three-over- four rhythms that obscure the pulse. However, the melodies and harmonies created, along with the gentleness of which they are instructed to be played, makes the work pleasant to the ear.

The piece opens with the marimba blocking a Cmaj7 chord in eighth-note groupings, seeming to set up a rhythmic and harmonic foundation. The vibraphone enters, playing what sounds to be improvised melodic ideas over the given sonority, creating the character of harmonic agreement, but rhythmic ambiguity. This segues directly into the first major section of the work, outlined by the marimba outlining harmonies in intricate rhythmic gestures, and the vibraphone playing melodic material with different rhythmic ideas. The element that helps this work sound slightly enigmatic is that Locklear bases most of the music in sixteenth notes and the occasional triplet. Were he to use anything more complex, the ambiguity would be replaced by confusion.

The middle section of the work is a bit slower and incorporates more rhythmic agreement from the performers. Here, both players serve as accompanists and the main voice, as both provide the harmony by oscillating between two notes with one hand and playing melodic material in the other. The marimba initiates the melodic gestures, while the second player echoes each gesture on the celeste. The composer states that a glockenspiel can be substituted for the celeste, but considering the speed and frequency, the performer will need to switch between the instruments; this substitution will make playing the piece noticeably more challenging. The final section of the work is in the same character as the first: rhythmically ambiguous while pleasing harmonically.

This is a beautiful piece of music. It has its technical difficulties along with the rhythmic ones, including the need to switch quickly from vibes to celeste with one hand, and a frequently used double-lateral grace-note technique that is required from both players. However, in the hands of mature keyboardists who strive to make the instruments lyrical as well as rhythmically accurate, this work can be enjoyed by any- one who hears it.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes 
Vol. 58, No. 2, April 2020


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