Anachronism & Five Sheets to the Wind | Gustav Hoyer: Witness

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Classical: Chamber Music Classical: Piano quintet Moods: Type: Instrumental
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Gustav Hoyer: Witness

by Anachronism & Five Sheets to the Wind

Modern musical impressions from a living composer using the vocabulary of the classical masters
Genre: Classical: Chamber Music
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Piano Quartet in C-Minor: I. Agitation
8:48 $0.99
2. Piano Quartet in C-Minor: II. Ennui
7:17 $0.99
3. Piano Quartet in C-Minor: III. Wonder: A Dialog with the Night Sky
8:29 $0.99
4. Piano Quartet in C-Minor: IV. Exuberance
6:44 $0.99
5. Inspiration
Five Sheets to the Wind
5:45 $0.99
6. Sousiana
Five Sheets to the Wind
3:51 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
This album is about being fully present in the moment, about entering in to moods and moments that we all share as humans. It is about setting aside the relentless drive of our technological binging to stop and listen with purpose. Each piece on this album is a short story of sorts. Each is a musical journey that departs from the station of a human feeling and takes a journey into the countryside of musical thought. Agitation, Ennui, Wonder, Exuberance, Inspiration. Each describes moments we all have. But the music isn't merely a description. To describe them as meditation would suggest that they are quiet and contemplative. They are not. Agitation begins with the bubbling cauldron of internal energy that boils in us. Ennui starts with the laconic melancholy of boredom that is fighting to find interest. Wonder is a contemplation of the dizzying expanse of the universe. Exuberance is the joy of running into the field on a warm spring day after the gloom and damp of winter has broken. Inspiration is the frustration and labor of moving from the flash of idea through the outworking of it into a forever imperfect portrait of that first uncontainable spark. Sousiana sits apart from these, in a way. It is a mirror of love and admiration reflecting back on the great American composer of our national pomp: John Phillip Sousa and so is a musical contemplation of a different sort.

Why write new music in an old language? 'Classical' music describes both a certain traditional instrumentation as well as a set of compositional techniques. The instruments (strings, winds) on this album were created and perfected over centuries before the invention of musical recording and playback technology. They were designed to fill a room and wash an audience in beautiful sounds without any amplification or electronic reinforcement. Their music flows from the organic world of wood, sap, reed, hair- the flesh and blood of the natural world. In order to master these elemental parts, the humans who play this music must study for decades to master them. They must labor alone for countless thousands of hours to train their minds to create what an audience will hear. They must be able to make hundreds of small decisions and delicate motions with their whole body to draw out of these instruments the best possible sounds at precisely the right moment, down to the millisecond of precision.

Likewise, the composer must make thousands of decisions about what note should sound on which instrument for what length of time using which instrumental sound technique. He or she must provide detailed instructions in a specialized printed language: musical notation, and prepare and publish a copy of these instructions specific to each player. And all of these decisions must be filtered through centuries of musical knowledge, convention, and expectation to create a blueprint for what is ultimately a profoundly human encounter of soul on soul through sound.

So, back to the question, why write new music in an 'old-fashioned' style? Because, for me, it is the only language that can describe the modern musical impressions I want to convey. To bring people into mindful and active listening requires music that is delightful enough to savor, but detailed enough to reward focus and effort. Each note, each stroke of the bow, each breath of the flute or oboe are layered together like a rich and intricate oil painting that rewards attention at a distance and up close. Classical music is often shuttered away in stuffy music halls or sparsely attended academic settings. I want to give people a chance to experience this great art form in untraditional ways – to break down the barrier between performer and audience. I hope this album provides you a chance to turn off distraction and enter into the world of your own soul with this music as your companion. It is offered from one human to another as a guide for you into your own humanity.

-Gustav Hoyer

About the Composer:
Gustav Hoyer was born in Denver, CO in 1972. He began his musical pursuits in high school by studying music theory, piano, and violin. He pursued degrees in composition and has written music for a wide variety of ensembles, media, and settings. His recorded music has been heard in film, on radio, and in performance around the world. He continues to create new music that draws on the tools of classical vocabulary to create musical narratives that are modern in their contemplations. He was the founder and Artistic Director for the Los Angeles-based Orchestra Unleashed, and is currently serving as the Artistic Director of NoCo Artists. As a conductor he has performed over 20 new compositions by composers from around the world.

Hoyer has been writing modern music in the classical vocabulary for most of his life. His compositions have been recorded and heard in concerts around the world, but his passion is for something more transcendent: leading audiences to encounters of unexpected beauty in an age of overstimulation.

Audiences in California and Colorado are already acquainted with Hoyer’s unique approach to immersive, multi-faceted musical encounters. His recent collaboration with Fort Collins-based Classical Revolution packed a reduced orchestra inside a planetarium for an interstellar musical journey. Anachronism, a special one-night event, featured a string orchestra and an interactive, steampunk-themed set. A collaboration with Canyon Concert Ballet and Prost Brewery produced Ballet, Bach & Beer performed in an art gallery.

In 2018, Hoyer will debut The Salon Sessions, a highly curated series of house concerts featuring original music, craft cocktails, and thematic art installations. The event series will mark the release of Hoyer’s new album, Witness. Hosted by local Colorado residents, each concert promises to be an intimate experience harkening back to the way classical music was originally presented.

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