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Tome On The Range

Powell's Books: A Baker's Dozen Special Edition
Adam Lehrer , August 22nd, 2020 08:03

Electronic music producer Powell picks favourite books by Baudrillard, Derrida, Kafka, and Susan Sontag


Alfia Nakipbekova, Performing Nomos Alpha by Iannis Xenakis: Reflections on Interpretive Space
Again I could have included any Xenakis book but this one is about my favourite piece of Xenakis music; a solo piece for cello. Alfia writes about it from the performer's perspective because it’s incredibly challenging, her emphasis here is more on technique than notes. There’s a lot of what she calls “interpretive space” in this piece, that the performer needs to fill in. It can take years of practice to play it. The way it’s broken apart into tiny little objects strung together depending on whose playing, each piece separated by silence. That piece is closely related to how I see electronic music. Alfia prioritises the cello less than she does shape and texture. The shape of things is important to me with electronic music. It’s also a brilliant essay; she draws a comparison between playing that piece and watching Tarkovsky's Stalker