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After an initial lusty statement of the original chanson, the main body of the piece is divided into three sections. Each is underpinned by material derived from the L’homme armé melody (still with its original words) which is heard first in the bass part, then the tenor, and finally the alto, in progressively (proportionally) shorter note values; in each section it is treated differently—in the first, as a succession of drones, in the second as part of a homorhythmic chorale and finally as the basis of a nervous, quasi-hocketing texture. Above this the sopranos (and altos in the first section) weave a freely composed, more subjective, setting of the Robert Palmer poem.
The armed man was commissioned by The Clerks with funds provided by the Jerwood Foundation and first performed by them at the Wigmore Hall on April 30th, 2000.
from notes by Gabriel Jackson © 2008
|Don't talk - just listen!|
This album presents a selection of works commissioned by The Clerks over the last decade, and is their first devoted entirely to contemporary music. The impulse behind each commission was different, as was the context in which they were first perf ...» More