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One For The Road

1999
piano, double bass or electric bass guitar, percussion (drum set)
ca. 5 min.

2000
version for prepared player piano
4:40 min.

The instrumentation of the piece, that of a rhythm section of a jazz band, supports a jazzy feeling on the surface contradicted by an underlying formal process. The tempo seems to decelerate permanently though the density of sound events is kept constant. This is achieved by transposing the idea of the “Shepard tones” (the acoustical illusion of a perpetual pitch glissando) onto the temporal structure.

In the year 2000, One for the Road was transcribed for player piano, the strings of which are especially prepared so as to evoke the instrumentation of the original trio setting.

“One for the Road deals with the time due between slipping, getting ready, swinging out and similar activities. There is always the danger that the process comes to a standstill before the planned departure and therefore a long night lies ahead.” (original programme note, 1999)

first performance: Cologne, April 30, 1999

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