Aaaaaaaaages ago, on the 31st of July, there was a concert at the Richmond Uniting Church given by Quiver, a newly formed contemporary music ensemble. Anthony Lyons has reviewed the concert for Resonate magazine, but it (undeservedly) completely slipped SoundisGrammar’s mind.

I don’t have too much to add to the linked review, except to say that one of the great strengths of the concert was its extreme diversity. The composers on the program are all from utterly different worlds, and rather than seeming like a disconnected mess like many such concerts are, the superb musicianship of Quiver was able to not only transcend these differences, but capitalise on them. The differences between the works were sometimes exaggerated, sometimes elided, commonalities were found, illuminated and explored, discrepancies were collided. In short, the program resulted in a sensational play of resonance between remarkably different sounding bodies.

Luke Paulding’s work, her sparkling flesh in a saecular ecstasy, is also deserving of comment. I didn’t, perhaps, like it quite so much as Anthony Lyons did. I wasn’t convinced by it architecturally, and thought that some of the sounds (or rather, their mode of production) seemed to err towards calculated sensationalism, rather than sonic or semantic meaning. But this was a very, very strong work, of the sort that I would have sold my soul several times over to have been writing music this interesting when I was in my early twenties (or even now, in my late twenties…), and it seems clear to me that …saecular ecstasy heralds the arrival of what promises to be major new voice in the Australian compositional landscape.

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