Author Topic: Tristan Murail (1947-)  (Read 1585 times)

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Offline sanantonio

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Tristan Murail (1947-)
« on: January 23, 2014, 09:20:45 AM »
Tristan Murail (born March 11, 1947 in Le Havre, France).

Murail is associated with the "spectral" technique of composition, which involves the use of the fundamental properties of sound as a basis for harmony, as well as the use of spectral analysis, FM, RM, and AM synthesis as a method of deriving polyphony.

Major pieces by Murail include large orchestral pieces such as Gondwana, Time and Again and, more recently, Serendib and L'esprit des dunes.

Other pieces include his Désintégrations for 17 instruments and tape, Mémoire/Erosion for French horn and nine instruments, Ethers for flute and ensemble, Winter Fragments for flute, clarinet, piano, violin, cello and electronics as well as Vampyr! for electric guitar.

Offline Brewski

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2014, 09:44:31 AM »
Thanks for starting a Murail thread; I'm a big fan of his work. Last year Pierre-Laurent Airmard did his 2012 piano concerto, Le désenchantement du monde, with David Robertson and the New York Philharmonic - wish I could have gone more than once. And a few years ago the orchestra did Gondwana, which was incredible, and is now among my favorite works of all time.

Have also heard Marilyn Nonken in his piano music, which for me is almost a different animal, compared to his writing for other instruments.

--Bruce
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Offline sanantonio

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2014, 09:57:05 AM »
Thanks for starting a Murail thread; I'm a big fan of his work. Last year Pierre-Laurent Airmard did his 2012 piano concerto, Le désenchantement du monde, with David Robertson and the New York Philharmonic - wish I could have gone more than once. And a few years ago the orchestra did Gondwana, which was incredible, and is now among my favorite works of all time.

Have also heard Marilyn Nonken in his piano music, which for me is almost a different animal, compared to his writing for other instruments.

--Bruce

I was surprised that there had not been a thread created yet.  He is also a favorite of mine, along with the other main spectral composers.  This recording has nice selection of some of his more recent chamber music ~



Winter Fragments
Unanswered Questions
Ethers
Feuilles a travers les cloches
Le Lac


Argento Chamber Ensemble, Galante

Offline Brewski

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2014, 10:00:30 AM »
Thanks for that reminder! Why I haven't acquired that...I have no idea.  :-[

Argento does excellent work; they did a beautiful job with G.F. Haas's in vain here a few years ago.

--Bruce

Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.
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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2014, 10:19:35 AM »
I've got the disc with Gondwana and Desintegrations on it. Only listened to it once so far. "Interesting stuff" is my superficial first impression.
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Offline Brewski

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2014, 10:30:29 AM »
I've got the disc with Gondwana and Desintegrations on it. Only listened to it once so far. "Interesting stuff" is my superficial first impression.

I must have played Gondwana for 7 or 8 different people - not all of them contemporary music fans, either - and the comments were uniformly positive, e.g., "fascinating," "unlike anything I've heard." How Murail manages to depict the shifting of the earth's land masses - a process that took millions of years - in 15 minutes is a marvel to me. The rest of that disc is pretty great, too.

--Bruce
Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.
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Offline sanantonio

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2014, 10:53:43 AM »
This recent work, Les Sept Paroles (2010), is something anyone new to Murail should hear.   Because of its size, both in length and the instrumental and vocal forces required, it presents a good opportunity to hear what Murail is capable of.  It also has some of his best music, IMO.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqze4mN9V1Y

Michel Khalifa has written rather extensive program notes on the work for its premier - Les sept Paroles, Note
« Last Edit: January 23, 2014, 11:26:14 AM by sanantonio »

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2014, 11:18:07 AM »
This recent work, Les Sept Paroles (2010), is something anyone new to Murail should hear. 

Thanks, I listened to the opening 10 minutes or so. Reminds me of Ligeti's 1960s soundscapes, though less concentrated in character.
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Offline sanantonio

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2014, 11:30:06 AM »
Thanks, I listened to the opening 10 minutes or so. Reminds me of Ligeti's 1960s soundscapes, though less concentrated in character.

I don't know the Ligeti works you mention, but I can understand the idea of "soundscape", which is a basic aspect of the spectral style.  That said, Les Sept Paroles is an hour-long work, and develops beyond what you heard in the first ten minutes into a more complex structure.

I will try to hear some of the music of Ligeti you referred to.  Do you have any titles to suggest?

Thanks,

 :)

Offline Brewski

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2014, 11:32:18 AM »
This recent work, Les Sept Paroles (2010), is something anyone new to Murail should hear.   Because of its size, both in length and the instrumental and vocal forces required, it presents a good opportunity to hear what Murail is capable of.  It also has some of his best music, IMO.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqze4mN9V1Y

Michel Khalifa has written rather extensive program notes on the work for its premier - Les sept Paroles, Note

Thanks so much for pointing this out, but whoa - an hour-long piece!  :o Can't listen now, but definitely will later, perhaps over the weekend. (Too many concerts in the next few days.) Sounds like a real treat, from your description.

--Bruce
Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.
     ~ Gustav Mahler

Twitter: @brucehodgesny

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2014, 11:36:19 AM »

I will try to hear some of the music of Ligeti you referred to.  Do you have any titles to suggest?

Atmospheres and Lontano were the ones that came to my mind while listening.
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Offline 7/4

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2014, 08:13:55 AM »
I enjoy the Marilyn Nonken piano album and the Gondwana/Desintegrations disc. I'd really like to get the Winter Fragments CD, I've heard it of line...I need the real thing.

I think Spectralism will develop and evolve into a major compositional trend in the years to come.

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2014, 10:31:38 AM »

I think Spectralism will develop and evolve into a major compositional trend in the years to come.

Hasn't Spectralism already been around since the 1970s or so?
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Offline sanantonio

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2014, 10:52:14 AM »
Hasn't Spectralism already been around since the 1970s or so?

Yes, Grisey and Murail were the primary exponents in the '70s, however, the kinds of things they were interested in had been around much earlier.  Composers such as Varese, Messiaen, even Debussy, could be considered composers who set the stage for the basic ingredients of what has been called Spectralism.

There are several composers who continue to work in the area that Grisey and Murail carved out, e.g.  Iancu Dumitrescu, and his wife  Ana-Maria Avram, and have expanded upon their musical expression.  These days some composers are taking a very technical route, whereas earlier composers relied upon their instincts, but the primary concerns are essentially the same: using timbre and instrumental (or electronic) color to establish large form structures as opposed to harmonic, motivic development, or serial methods.

I think that the style will continue to produce adherents and new works for some time to come.

Offline snyprrr

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2014, 01:18:08 PM »
Yes, Grisey and Murail were the primary exponents in the '70s, however, the kinds of things they were interested in had been around much earlier.  Composers such as Varese, Messiaen, even Debussy, could be considered composers who set the stage for the basic ingredients of what has been called Spectralism.

There are several composers who continue to work in the area that Grisey and Murail carved out, e.g.  Iancu Dumitrescu, and his wife  Ana-Maria Avram, and have expanded upon their musical expression.  These days some composers are taking a very technical route, whereas earlier composers relied upon their instincts, but the primary concerns are essentially the same: using timbre and instrumental (or electronic) color to establish large form structures as opposed to harmonic, motivic development, or serial methods.

I think that the style will continue to produce adherents and new works for some time to come.

Doncha'll forget that BEST Murail cd- the "Music of Our Time" French label, with Serendib and the other two pieces. Perfect Murail cd. I also like that long piano piece, 'Territories d'l'oubli'(?)...

Is 'Ethers' the one with the 'maracas?'... can't stand that. There's the three mystery discs on Accord which have a bunch of pieces between them.
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Offline snyprrr

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #15 on: January 25, 2014, 06:56:03 AM »
Has anyone integrated 'live' and 'E/A' better than Murail?
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Offline sanantonio

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2014, 06:30:44 AM »
I wrote an extended post about Spectral Music on my blog.  Thought I'd share here, and would appreciate your comments.

Spectral Music

 :)

Offline milk

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #17 on: May 02, 2014, 04:17:18 AM »
I wrote an extended post about Spectral Music on my blog.  Thought I'd share here, and would appreciate your comments.

Spectral Music

 :)
I have to admit I have a hard time understanding these technical considerations. But I'm going to pursue the music anyhow and see where I get. It sounds as if they are more scientists than musicians but this may be a misunderstanding of the techniques. Either way I'm not closed to it and I quite like what I've heard of Grisey.

Offline snyprrr

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #18 on: September 16, 2015, 06:51:32 PM »
bump
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Offline Thatfabulousalien

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Re: Tristan Murail (1947-)
« Reply #19 on: March 20, 2017, 12:55:16 AM »
He's another favorite composer (geezz, I have a few  :laugh:  ), that I don't pay enough attention to in succession.

An absolute genius in the "spectral" field, I may like him even more than Grisey (I don't know).

<3 <3 <3
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