Four Experiments

By Nate Wooley

Album: Four Experiments


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Four Experiments stemmed from a pandemic fascination with an early book of poetry by Stephen Spender and a desire to explore new ways of viewing my relationship to instrumental, compositional, and improvisatory technique. Each piece here was written to be played by any number of players with any level of background, and they are presented here in solo versions and in small ensembles. Beyond the musical challenges posed through manic repetition, instrumental discomfort, the frailty of the untrained voice, and working in uncomfortable time frames, these pieces also present personal and social challenges to be overcome in preparation for their performance. It was only natural to base the set’s ensemble on the group of musicians loosely referred to as Mutual Aid Music. These performers combine their mastery with a fearlessness that is necessary in attacking each Experiment. Failure is a possible form of virtuosity, and the stunningly intimate and raw music made by these musicians, using the odd constructions of the Experiments as their guide, is proof that this kind of mastery can be overwhelmingly moving.

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