Review of From me flows what you call Time…

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Here is a lovely review by Gene Tyranny that Bob Becker has discovered on the Midomi site (visit it here to read the original). The review is undated, but provides a most sensitive description of NEXUS’ signature work, Toru Takemitsu’s From me flows what you call Time…

Performed by the percussion group Nexus, and the Pacific Symphony Orchestra conducted by Carl St. Clair. “From me flows what you call Time” is a concerto for percussion ensemble of five players and orchestra was written in 1990 for the centennial of Carnegie Hall. The title is from Makoto Ooka’s poem “Clear Blue Water,” and was intended by the composer to refer to the music that flowed from Carnegie Hall during its lifetime. Takemitsu was also inspired by two meditative elements from Tibetan Buddhism in the creation of this work: the number five and its association with the five colors of the Wind Horse — blue for water, red for fire, yellow for earth, green for wind, and white for sky. There is a wide variety of percussion timbres employed in this work: gentle surface textures of small bells, vibraphone solos, virtuosic chromatic passages for steel drums, exotic rolling patterns on marimbas, the eerie nighttime calling of slow glissandi on a bowed saw combined with bells, the sound of a rainstick (or, alternatively, a suspended cymbal) combined with a rich chorale for strings to make an intriquing and innovative combination, galloping patterns on log drums in which you can image the Wind Horse flashing the power of the dharmic colors as it tears across a landscape only partially earthly, a thrilling stereo duet for high and low congas in complex rhythms. As the piece slowly closes, we hear, in the distance, bells located in the top balcony of the concert space gently rung by five long colored streamers (blue, red, yellow, green, white) attached to them and pulled by the performers on the stage. ~ “Blue” Gene Tyranny, All Music Guide

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