John Bischoff - The Glass Hand

John Bischoff - The Glass Hand
Release Date:
Experimental Electronic
The Glass Hand

The Glass Hand is a mysterious and fascinating live electronics piece for a solo performer, in which "low level synthesizer behaviors are highlighted and brought into the foreground." A traditionally notated score indicates the synthesizer keys to be played, but the player must count sonic effects in order to proceed. This work is a fine example of the composer's work in original, well-crafted, short-form pieces, which often have an air either of mysterious transformation or the subtle joke.

"The Web of Fascination" for computer-controlled sound modules is described by the composer as a "meditation on almost immovable sound." Small sizzling tones, tiny rattlings, and shuffling noises appear occasionally on the surface. The occasional tones become more full-bodied, like messages and signals posed by the massive soundscape.

The sounds continue in their inevitable, fateful sequence, until things begin to fade into a deep and distant miasma. "The Industrial Revolution" is for computer-controlled sound modules; brief noise samples are "rapidly modulated in pitch, loudness and width while a virtual ensemble of electronic instruments plays along." The piece is a gradual accumulation of sounds presented in sliding rhythmic cycles. "Drift" "features repeating sequential textures that unfold differently on each recursion." Each returning phrase initially begins with a rolling rhythmic cycle that alternatively fades, or modulates along another pathway. A brilliant study of electronic textures, this is also a strangely moving work. "Surface 11" is a three-minute composition for computer-controlled synthesizers. Quickly modulated radio transmission-like sounds modulate in sharply defined, on-off type layers, often densely overlapped. In "Surface 5," a distant sound like a highly compressed, dense star fire is interrupted by single high whistling tones. In "Surface 2," a deep, motoric, flapping sound alternates with steely pure tones and distant sliding ring modulations like a wideband radio being tuned.

Surface 11 / John BischoffJohn Bischoff3:05
Surface 5 / John BischoffJohn Bischoff3:04
Surface 2 / John BischoffJohn Bischoff3:08
Drift / John BischoffJohn Bischoff12:55
The Industrial Revolution / John BischoffJohn Bischoff12:49
The Glass Hand / John BischoffJohn Bischoff8:44
The Web of Fascination / John BischoffJohn Bischoff13:55