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Bang On A Can All-Stars

Technically, the name Bang on a Can refers not to a specific set of musicians but to a yearly festival of new music curated by avant-garde composer/performers Julia Wolfe, David Lang, and Michael Gordon. (Albums by the group are most often credited to the Bang on a Can All-Stars, a relatively stable group of six to eight performers and arrangers who comprise the core of the creative group.) The trio formed Bang on a Can in 1987; over the next ten years, the concept grew from a one-day festival to an impressive array of live and recorded works. The first three Bang on a Can releases were CD anthologies of live recordings taken from the group's 1992, 1993, and 1994 festivals released on the CRI label as Bang on a Can Live, Vol. 1, 2, and 3. Their studio debut came with 1995's Industry, featuring a track each by Wolfe, Lang, and Gordon and two lengthy chamber music pieces by their spiritual mentor Louis Andriessen. Both Industry and its more eclectic follow-up, 1996's Cheating, Lying, Stealing, were released by Sony Classical. Bang on a Can jumped to Universal's new music imprint Point for their next release, a brilliantly conceived and flawlessly executed re-imagining of Brian Eno's Ambient 1: Music for Airports that often turned Eno's sketches for tape recorders into beautiful works for live musicians.

Next, Lang, Wolfe, and Gordon collaborated on the opera Lost Objects, an extended narrative work with libretto by Deborah Artman featuring vocal soloists, a mixed chorus, a full orchestra and, intriguingly, guest appearances by turntable guru DJ Spooky. Following that masterwork, the group recorded several early pieces by the great minimalist composer Steve Reich and paid tribute to another landmark of modern classical music by reinterpreting Terry Riley's In C for a bevy of electric, electronic, and acoustic instruments. That recording was the first release on Cantaloupe Records, a label owned by Bang on a Can to release albums by affiliated composers and performers. The second Bang on a Can release on the label was 2001's eclectic Renegade Heaven, featuring pieces by Glenn Branca and Phil Kline, as well as Gordon's "I Buried Paul," a tongue-in-cheek salute to the playing of backwards tapes and other unintentional avant-gardisms in relation to the Paul Is Dead hoax of 1969. ~ Stewart Mason, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Big, Beautiful, Dark and Scary

Disc 1
Composer: Julia Wolfe
Title: Big, Beautiful, Dark And Scary, For Clarinet, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Composer: David Lang
Title: Sunray, For Clarinet, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Composer: Michael Gordon
Title: For Madeline, For Clarinet, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Vibraphone & Piano
Composer: Evan Ziporyn
Title: Shadow Bang, Theater Piece
Disc 2
Composer: David Longstreth
Title: Instructional Video, For Reeds, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Title: Matt Damon, For Reeds, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Title: Breakfast At J&M, For Clarinet, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Composer: Conlon Nancarrow
Title: Study for Player Piano No.2
Title: Study For Player Piano No. 3a
Title: Study For Player Piano No. 3c
Title: Study For Player Piano No.11, An Isorhythmic Blues Study
Composer: Louis Andriessen
Title: Life, For Saxophone, Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
Composer: Kate Moore
Title: Ridgeway, For Clarinet, Electric Guitar, Cello, Double Bass, Piano & Percussion
x

Track List: Bang On A Can Classics

Composer: David Lang
Title: Cheating, Lying, Stealing, Bass Clarinet, Cello, Piano & 2 Percussionists
Composer: Julia Wolfe
Title: Lick
Composer: Annie Gosfield
Title: The Manufacture Of Tangled Ivory
Composer: Evan Ziporyn
Title: Tsmindao Ghmerto
Composer: Lois V Vierk
Title: Red Shift IV
Composer: Nick Didkovsky
Title: Amalia's Secret
Composer: Michael Gordon
Title: Industry (solo Electric Cello)
x

Track List: Industry

Composer: Julia Wolfe
Title: Lick
Composer: Louis Andriessen
Title: Hout, For Tenor Saxophone, Marimba, Guitar & Piano
Composer: David Lang
Title: The Anvil Chorus, For Solo Percussion
Composer: Louis Andriessen
Title: Hoketus For Mixed Ensemble
Composer: Michael Gordon
Title: Industry (solo Electric Cello)

Comments

Love this group!
sounds like random banging on cans, not very good
I'm all ears.

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