I first experienced Just Ancient Loops performed live by Maya Beiser at Big Ears Festival, with Bill Morrison's incredible accompanying film projected on stage. Was so blown away I had to order the CD. Fantastic album!
Favorite track: Just Ancient Loops III. Ascension.
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“Harrison is bound to profoundly influence the musicians of his generation.” – Terry Riley
“With virtuoso chops, rock-star charisma, and an appetite for pushing her instrument to the edge of avant-garde adventurousness, Maya Beiser is the post-modern diva of the cello...” – The Boston Globe
Composer/pianist Michael Harrison’s Time Loops is the follow up to Revelation, a critically acclaimed Cantaloupe recording from 2007, and features cello innovator, Maya Beiser and one track with the Young People’s Chorus of New York City. Michael Harrison is known for developing one of the most distinctive musical styles in recent years; utilizing innovative tuning relationships to further develop Just Intonation—an ancient tuning system where the distances between notes are based upon whole number ratios.
Author Stuart Isacoff writes, "the mysterious power of music has intrigued thinkers across the centuries. Plato described a universe in which Sirens situated atop the rings of the cosmic whorl each sing a single note from a great scale, together producing concords that can transport mortals to the heavenly regions." Time Loops is that recording.
“Michael’s music is perfect for our times,” states Maya Beiser. “It’s architectural and precise, yet exhilarating and beautiful. It draws on music from ancient Greece and the Renaissance, Indian ragas and minimalism.” This is, in a nutshell, Time Loops the CD. At the core we hear Just Ancient Loops, composed by Michael for Maya, who makes magic with her layers of, what sounds like, an endless number of cellos. The musical sound is so beguiling that that listener is hurled ears first upwards towards the cosmos and left suspended in air.
The remainder of the recording is a slow traversal back into reality, floating downward until we are settled back into the sound of a children’s choir, singing music just slightly beyond their reach, and yet somehow in the end everyone finds terra firma again. This is a recording like no other, filled with sonic surprises and nuggets of luscious melodies that remind us of Santayana’s proclamation that “the earth has music for those who listen”.