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Old 06-01-2015, 09:18 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The Official Minimalism Thread

I looked through several pages of this and the classical section but couldn't find any pages specifically dedicated to minimalism, so I don't think I'm at risk of making a repeat thread.

Who are your favourite minimalist artists? This doesn't have to be oriented towards classical music, but that's where a lot of minimalism resides so I'll be focusing my post in that area. The biggest names as far as minimalism goes are Steve Reich and Philip Glass, who make great music but neither of them appear on my favourites list tbh.

I'd have to say my all time favourite is Terry Riley. His most famous piece is In C, which is a piece made for any number of musicians where they choose from a series of phrases and introduce improvisations all In C. Really beautiful piece, but here's one that maybe most people haven't heard that's incredible as well.


Another composer who I've come across whose take on minimalism is really hypnotic and beautiful is Charlemagne Palestine. His album Strumming Music is phenomenal imo.
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Old 06-01-2015, 11:17 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Some do come to mind...

Apart from the one's you've mentioned I really like Tony Conrad, especially the collaboration with Faust. I'm sure you know it.

La Monte Young is one of the big names of the genre, but his foray into blues seems to be less known. I really like it.



Michael Nyman has some great music, me being a huge fan of Greenaway's films might be a factor though.

The Necks' "Drive-By" is pretty much easy listening, but it's a great hypnotic album to relax to.

A lot of Evan Parker's solo sax albums are very minimalist and repetitive and should satisfy fans of minimalism without aversion to some nice screeching.

And apropos minimalist solo sax: Colin Stetson
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Old 06-01-2015, 11:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by grindy View Post

A lot of Evan Parker's solo sax albums are very minimalist and repetitive and should satisfy fans of minimalism without aversion to some nice screeching.

And apropos minimalist solo sax: Colin Stetson
Interesting, I've never really considered these two to be minimalist but they do totally fall under the category. Didn't really like the whole album, but the track Stetson's To See More Light is phenomenal.

To jump a little bit more outside of the classical I mentioned in my post, here's Eleh. Super minimal electronic drone. I think it's best listened to extraordinarily loud, being stoned as hell is a plus as well when you're drowning in the alternating rhythms.

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Old 06-01-2015, 11:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Interesting, I've never really considered these two to be minimalist but they do totally fall under the category. Didn't really like the whole album, but the track Stetson's To See More Light is phenomenal.

To jump a little bit more outside of the classical I mentioned in my post, here's Eleh. Super minimal electronic drone. I think it's best listened to extraordinarily loud, being stoned as hell is a plus as well when you're drowning in the alternating rhythms.

Stetson's solo albums all have some incredible tracks, but I'm rarely patient enough to listen to them as a whole, the worse tracks, while still good, always seem like pale copies of the better ones.
The "Those Who Didn't Run" EP might be my favourite of his solo releases.
The album with Sarah Neufeld on the other hand is great as an album, the songs are much more distinctive and well thought out.
I'm really curious as to how his music will develop further.
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Old 06-01-2015, 11:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I can listen to Judges all the way through, same with Never Were the Way She Was, which I honestly think is his best as an album. I was a bit worried that he would start to get stale and keep trudging on with somewhat updated versions of New History Warfare, but his latest shows that he's ready to step out of his comfort zone.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I can listen to Judges all the way through, same with Never Were the Way She Was, which I honestly think is his best as an album. I was a bit worried that he would start to get stale and keep trudging on with somewhat updated versions of New History Warfare, but his latest shows that he's ready to step out of his comfort zone.
I'm trying to figure out which musician I'd like him to collaborate with next.
Peter Evans would be great. Or, if one wants trumpet, Arve Henriksen, although the resulting album might turn out to be a little new-agey with him on board.
Stian Westerhus might also fit nicely. Or even Fred Frith, especially on an acoustic guitar.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I think he should have another go at it with Gustafsson. I don't think they were ready for Stones, but it's a possibility now.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I think he should have another go at it with Gustafsson. I don't think they were ready for Stones, but it's a possibility now.
Big yes to that.
When I heard two of my favourite sax players would release an album, I expected a lot more than "Stones" turned out to be.
I respect them for not taking the obvious path with it, but come on, an "obvious" album of Gustafssons deliciously mad wails over Stetson's usual minimalist pulse would have been orgasmic.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
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In C is probably my fav Riley piece as well. heres a pretty cool rendition of it as well:



I love quite a few of the names that have already been dropped, particularly Charlamagne Palestine and La Monte Young. maybe my favorite minimalist work is:



Sinking of the Titanic by Gavin Bryars

it's gorgeous. cant forget about all of William Basinski's works as well.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That's pretty much my favourite version of In C that I've heard. It captures a lot of the fun that the piece is about better than the orchestral versions. That's Sinking of the Titanic, right? Text is a bit small to read.
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