soft clocks/GALA ascendant (htSD)

soft clocks/GALA ascendant (htSD)

soft clocks/GALA ascendant (htSD)

Program Notes

This piece was written not long after the death of Salvador Dalí, the great Spanish surrealist painter. The title makes reference to two of Dalí’s most famous images, the melting watches in The Persistence of Memory, and that of his wife, Gala, who is present in so many of his paintings, perhaps most notably at the foot of the cross in The Crucifixion.

I have tried in this piece to capture something of the incredible energy of his canvasses, as well as the barrage of images, which range from the unbelievably beautiful to the unbelievably grotesque.

The composition was realized in the electronic music studio at Indiana University. The primary sonic sources are sampled acoustic sounds, which are manipulated and exported to a DX7 keyboard, and then further manipulated. Among the sampled sounds are a disk of animal noises that I found in the studio, my wife’s incredibly annoying old alarm clock, keys rattling in a stockpot, a wooden spoon thumped against a cutting board, a Tibetan prayer bell, and a Pink Floyd song. A few synthesized sounds are included as well. I wish to acknowledge Bill Kleinsasser for his inestimable help in making the final mix-down.

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