First published in The Herald on 6 May, 2015
“I might put a beat in it. Get over it.” The composer Anna Meredith isn’t big on artistic qualms. She writes unfussy music in primary colours, music that is upbeat and upfront. “I don’t think I’m a brilliant craftsman,” she says cheerfully, no hint of diffidence. “I don’t get bogged down in masses of detail. I love big brushstrokes.”
First published in the Guardian on 4 May, 2015
Rapt, intensely subtle, exquisitely slow, the music of Eliane Radigue was the heart and soul of this year’s Tectonics. The 82-year-old French composer was a pioneer of electronic music in the 1950s and for decades only produced synthesiser sound art, but it was her recent acoustic series OCCAM OCCEAN that featured in two concerts here, with playing of virtuosic control from harpist Rhodri Davies, bassoonist Dafne Vincente-Sandoval, cellist Charles Curtis and tuba player Robin Hayward. In shifting configurations they dovetailed ultra-quiet sounds to reveal infinite gradations of pitch, timbre and overtone tints, culminating in a glowing, graceful quartet. Radigue’s message is uplifting: slow down, listen in close and marvel at the radiant colours contained in the detail.