for four tenor trombones and four toms. revised 2010, for 4 alto saxophones and four toms.

difficult. Employs a wide range for the trombones/saxes and difficult rhythms for everybody.

ca. 7'


Many of my ideas come when I'm not actually trying to think of them, and this piece is the result of that kind of situation. I don't remember what inspired the piece; I only remember walking through the alley behind The Boston Conservatory when I got the idea to surround the audience in Seully Hall with drums and trombones playing very loudly. I was warned against evoking the "fight-or-flight" response in the audience members with an auditory assault from behind, but this was, in fact, the effect I was looking for. Many people seek out visceral thrills; why not in the concert hall, too? I wanted something raucous to finish off my recital and I had wanted to write an antiphonal work for quite some time, as well. The piece has four sections delineated by four large-ratio polyrhythms. More simply, that means that the entrances of the instruments are spaced out according to specific ratios, in this case being 32:25, 28:25, 24:25, and 16:25. These ratios are not meant to be audible; instead, they serve as a way of bringing structure to the piece and creating rhythmic tension.
In 2010, former NY Philharmonic and much lauded percussionist, Morris "Arnie" Lang contacted me about doing this piece. I had shown him the score about ten years earlier at Brooklyn College. Always make those contacts, folks, because you never know how they'll work out! He didn't have trombonists at his disposal, but did have saxophonists. Saxophonists, it is then!

score for trombone version.
score for saxophone version.
alto sax 1.
alto sax 2.
alto sax 3.
alto sax 4.
tom 1.
tom 2.
tom 3.
tom 4

Contact me for parts for the trombone version.

Do consider making a donation (of any amount, but let's say $10), if you choose to perform this piece, make copies of it, use it for educational purposes, if it has improved your life in any way. Otherwise, yes, it's yours for free. It is copyrighted, so give credit as necessary.