Release Date: November 10, 2017
Catalog #: RR7976
Format: Digital & Physical
21st Century
Chamber
Cello
Electronic
Saxophone

Decade Zero

WORKS FOR INSTRUMENTS & ELECTRONICS

Christopher Biggs composer

New from Ravello Records is DECADE ZERO, a compilation of works for instruments and electronics by Christopher Biggs. The works integrate traditional instruments with live electronic processing and sound files.

Biggs’ compositions focus on environmental, political, and scientific extra-musical concepts relevant to today’s world. Featuring the Western Brass Quintet, the title track, Decade Zero explores the last period in time when humanity can take decisive action to combat climate change without facing irrevocable changes to our world.

Externalities, for amplified cello and electronics, balances a consumer attempting to minimize the negative outcomes of their consumption choices while reflecting on participatory economics. Amass, for clarinet and electronics, has origins in the Arab Spring movement and Occupy Wall Street. It reflects on contemporary society’s desire for meaningful change through continuous stratifying and blending of music.

Biggs’ more abstract works, such as the Decoherence for trumpet and electronics, refer to concepts of quantum physics, and Recombinant Serenade features variations on the “Prologue” from Benjamin Britten’s Serenade for tenor, horn, and strings.

Featuring works based on science fiction, Biggs’ A Letter to the Moon is inspired by Italo Calvino’s short story The Distance to the Moon. Promethea, for alto saxophone and electronics, is based on Alan Moore’s graphic novel of the same name. The common themes between these works include the anxieties of decision-making, often represented with instrumental parts, and the range of resulting consequences, generally represented by the electronics. Biggs’ striking electro-acoustic works lend these ideas a startling immediacy by creating compelling music that will intrigue and thrill listeners.

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Artist Information

Christopher Biggs

Composer

Christopher Biggs is a composer and multimedia artist residing in Kalamazoo, MI, where he is Associate Professor of Music Composition and Technology at Western Michigan University. Biggs’ recent projects focus on integrating live instrumental performance with interactive audiovisual media. His compositions reflect on extramusical concepts, including climate change, physics, philosophy, and politics. Biggs is a co-founder and the director of SPLICE Institute, a weeklong intensive summer program for performers and composers to experience, explore, create, discuss, and learn techniques related to the creation and presentation of music for instruments and electronics.

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