barin999 (barin999) wrote,

Meredith Monk - Mercy, 2002 (Modern Composition/Avant-Garde)

1. braid 1 and leaping song, for voices & ensemble 8:14
2. braid 2, for voices & bowed marimba 2:35
3. urban march (shadow), for voices, synthesizer & piano 3:10
4. masks, for voices 1:43
5. line 1, for cymbals with microphone (for Meredith Monk's Mercy) 1:14
6. doctor/patient, for voices, piano, marimba & vibraphone 8:21
7. line 2, for cymbals with microphone & violin (for Meredith Monk's Mercy) 1:01
8. woman at the door, for voices, piano & melodica 5:55
9. prisoner, for voices & ensemble (with line 3 by John Hollenbeck) 5:23
10. epilogue, for voice, clarinet, piano & melodica 1:54
11. shaking, for voices & ensemble 3:05
12. liquid air, for voices & bowed vibraphone 3:53
13. urban march (light), for voices & ensemble 6:05
14. core chant, for voices & marimba 4:43

Meredith Monk - Vocals
Theo Bleckmann - Vocals
Allison Easter - Vocals
Katie Geissinger - Vocals
Ching Gonzalez - Vocals
Bohdan Hilash - Clarinet (Bass), Clarinet (Contrabass)
Allison Sniffin - Piano, Synthesizer, Viola, Violin, Vocals
John Hollenbeck - Bells, Cymbals, Drums (Bass), Marimba, Melodica

"Mercy is a music theater collaboration between Meredith Monk and visual artist Ann Hamilton, described as 'a meditation on the human capacity to both extend and withhold compassion, kindness, empathy, and mercy.' It's scored for six dancer/vocalists, two keyboards, percussion, violin, and theremin. Music and choreography are by Monk, with installations by Hamilton. Conception, development, and direction were shared. What's Mercy about? Who knows? This disc is the audio-only portion of the show with nary a liner note to sort things out a bit. Mercy represents a lovely evolution in Monk's work, with few surprises and departures within the unique and evocative genre she has created. The music is mostly very tonal in the traditional sense and lulling in a calmly minimalist way, though thoughtful and edgy, rarely letting one slip into comfortable inattention. Most of the singing is pure vocalise - from lyrical singing and chanting to whispers and whoops - trading the blatant sense of language for a gut experience that aims at something deeper and more atavistic than word setting may achieve. What good is all this without witnessing the stage setting by Hamilton and the remarkable dance and movement choreographed by Monk? Good enough to enjoy and merit total attention in the audio realm alone only, if one is a die-hard fan. There is simply no way to get a sense of Mercy without the visual element. The musical score to, say, Oklahoma! pretty much captures the entire sense of the show. But Mercy has sections called 'doctor/patient,' and 'line 3 and prisoner,' for example, which have almost no meaning stripped of the staging elements. That is the problem with getting Monk's theater works on audio-only discs; wait for the DVD of the entire production."




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