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Five Canons for Two Drums
for percussion

Work nos. 5–9
2008

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    Many of my earliest pieces were canons, but these were among the first I felt completely sure about. With no tempo or dynamics indications, playable on any drums or drum-like instruments, they were a joy to make: pure rhythm, and pure music, because I'm fairly certain there were no real life circumstances inspiring these pieces. I did have nicknames for them, though: no. 3 was "Silence", and no. 5 was "Matter" – the latter word might have been on my mind because of the eponymous Iain Banks novel, then recently published.

    A few years after, I made optional endings for the canons (they're infinite in the original score; performers are encouraged to make/improvise their own endings). I published them as Work No. 63, Five Endings. This was part of a long series of percussion works from 2013, which included all kinds of music, from Boltzmann Brain and Resolution, which involved chance operations, to strictly mathematical pieces like Breakout. MIDI recordings above include these five through-composed endings, and also showcase some of the variety that can be achieved when performing this music.


    Five Canons for Two Drums – PDF score   Five Endings for Two Drums – PDF score


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