Presenting contemporary works that blend multiple genres, from classical and avant-garde to heavy metal and world music, the McCormick Percussion Group, hailed as "a very skilled and important contemporary percussion ensemble" by Audiophile Audition, expands the boundaries and possibilities of the percussion ensemble's repertoire on their latest Ravello Records release BETWEEN ROCK AND A HARD PLACE.
The title track, composed by Ciro Scotto, is a four-movement work that coalesces heavy metal and contemporary classical conventions, highlighting the connections between these two different yet similarly technical worlds of composition. Between Rock and a Hard Place-Unplugged substitutes electric and electronic instruments for classical guitar, contrabass, cello, and piano. Scotto says of his inspiration for this acoustic version, "Exploring the parallel dimension concept in Between Rock and a Hard Place-Unplugged allowed me to recompose the piece following ideas that did not develop in the original, so the new work is a complete rethinking and exploration of the material."
The McCormick Percussion Group also features two works for unspecified instrumentation by John Cage (1912-1992), Composition for Three Voices (1934), arranged for two vibraphones and marimba, and Five (1988), performed by bowed vibraphones. Rivus, by composer Dan Senn, another work for unspecified instruments, is performed on celeste, glockenspiel, and vibraphone for a blending of metallic and wooden timbres.