Welcome to Hyperion Records, an independent British classical label devoted to presenting high-quality recordings of music of all styles and from all periods from the twelfth century to the twenty-first.
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The form of Spiral is strictly governed by the proportions of a Fibonacci spiral, being divided into a number of sections, each one being shorter and faster than the last. Therefore, the temporal dimensions of the piece are constructed according to the following ratio: 233 / 144 / 89 / 55 / 34 / 21 / 13 / 8 / 5 / 3 / 2 / 1 / 1.
The cumulative effect is of a gradual ratcheting up of tension, as the initially contemplative material becomes ever more probing and animated. In a nod to the self-similar nature of fractals (in which of course the Fibonacci sequence plays a large part), the final, shortest section is itself then divided up according to the ratio 5 / 3 / 2 / 1 / 1, the last of which sub-sections (the period between the final tom-tom and temple block hits) has a duration of 1/24 of a second. This is the ‘singularity’ at the heart of the spiral, in which the form implodes, disintegrating under its own momentum.
As well as informing the overall shape of the piece, the Fibonacci sequence is also used on a smaller scale to generate both melodic and harmonic material: specifically, a line which rises or falls by 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 (and, in some cases, 13 and 21) semitones, occasionally ‘verticalised’ into a chord. The simultaneous use of the same numerical sequence on both the macro and micro levels is again intended as an allusion to the fractal world.
from notes by Alastair Putt © 2016