Iain Cameron's Diary
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2006-09-18 - 7:51 a.m.

The other flute isnt a Rudall-Carte, it’s a Buffet. I have just read a review of it which says that it’s a good sound but it demands more of the player than the Yamaha. Well that’s probably me in a nutshell in terms of why I feel more comfortable with an old beaten up Yamaha 3 series than the new Buffet 2.

I listened to some drum-n-bass on Saturday on the drive to Bath and thought how good it was – what an original form. Of course genres of electronica are notoriously hard to identify and name but as far as I can see Detroit techno grew out of Chicago house and migrated to europe around 1990. Drum n bass started not long afer that. I have a fairly good collection of early Chicago house, I would like more Detroit techno although the DVD is very good – and my one selection of drum n bass is probably enough. But the issue is how it all plays into song construction especially post-missing EBTG and Lamb who thanks to a cover CD I picked up on very early – one of the few CDs that my children would steal. I see Louise from Lamb was up for a Mercury – I am slightly curious why. To my ears it was probably 1996-98 that was the glorious era of english songwriting on the techno/drum n bass platform with jazzy margins. I have been thinking how marvellous Tracy Thorn’s gift for melody is – the way she lingers on 7ths 11ths 13ths etc. I am tempted to draw a parallel with the Ravel I was studying over the weekend.

I have been looking at the the casio wk3000 which looks extremely good for the money – drawbars and some synth programming plus some reasonable natural pianos and e-pianos.

I have been thinking about the harmonic trajectory in the de Marliave piece in the Tombeau - I realised that the 2nd meoldy in the recapitulation returns in a key a major third up from its original statement after which Ravel steps down before the last fantastic restatement of the principal theme. The final cadence – which is very jazzy – is very similar to the signature cadence in Shostakovich sq 6 – it’s a kind of what-the-hell throw away. I think it was hearing that cadence on the broadcast of the orchestral arrangement from the proms that made me want to look at this stuff again.

Anyway the restatement in a different key – contra to the classical harmonic narrative, a bit like the Haydn op 33 g major restatement where the 2nd theme is remembered in Eb – is for me a kind of parallel worlds/enduring unresolvable hankering trope – something that is part of the Shosta rhetoric too of course. In fact I have stumbled across a fair amount of philosophical hankering in the last few days – in Kowakalski’s book on Husserl for example at the end of which he more or less says that the detail of H is a pain in the butt but the point is what he was trying to do. That the project was bound to fail but to keep the culture going people must be encouraged to try so we should applaud such heroic failures.

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