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Maximalism: All Roads Lead to Reich

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Last October I had the privelage of seeing the Steve Reich, one of the most influential minimalist 20th Century composers perform at Carnegie Hall. Steve Reich is most famous for his minmalist compositions using tape loops, stagnant rhythms that ebb and flow and simple linear melodies.
Music for 18 Musicians is a reaction to his minmalist style and his first maximalist piece. This piece is a dense piece of work relying on the weaving melodies of pianos, vocals, vibes, strings, & clarinets.

Steve Reich – Pulses from Music for 18 Musicians
Steve Reich – Fast from Electric Counterpoint (Performed by Pat Methany

Steve Reich inspired music:
Sufjan Stevens – Out of Egypt from Illnoise
Battles – B+T from EP C
Robert Fripp & The League of Crafty Guitarists – Scaling The Whales from Show of Hands
RJD2 – The Proxy from Dead Ringer
Radiohead – Arpeggi (Live @ The Ether Festival 2005)

One Comment, Comment or Ping

  1. Rich Vreeland

    Maximalism ey? I’ve never heard that term thrown around with Music for 18 Musicians before… it’s definitely a minimalistic piece, it encompasses so many tendencies of that school of composition that I think it’s hard to debate that. It certainly does create a full sound in the process which I suppose you could amount to something like “maximalism” in terms of trying to describe the interlocking ostinatos and the sheer amount of voices that exist at once.

    Maybe you’re suggesting that the piece transcends minimalism because it’s such a masterpiece?

    If so then I agree, haha.

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