Percussion has long played a key role in Gavin Bryars' work, with a quintet of tuned percussion replacing violins in his first opera Medea, from 1984.
That quintet subsequently became Les Percussion Claviers de Lyon, employed here to realise three major percussion pieces. At Portage And Main (2009) opens eerily with deep drum and marimba tones glistening with tam-tam, gong and cymbals. One Last Bar Then Joe Can Sing (1994) uses bowed vibes and crotales alongside struck tones to create a forest of sound, while New York (2004) incorporates a small chamber orchestra of winds and strings with the percussion, adding undulating textures akin to the 1970s work of Steve Reich.
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