Archive for October, 2006

ruska

14 October 2006

falleaves3

fall outcrufting

12 October 2006

One Grundig 37-730 text TV, personal model. The picture tube blew right before the broadcast of the first round of the presidential elections in January. Edicron said they didn’t know if they could fix it so I bought another secondhand Grundig TV from them, which turned out to be better than this one. That is, the screen on the current TV is bigger than a laptop display, nearly flat, and has good color balance. There’s an occasional tracing problem which I can live with.

One Brother HL-730 laser printer in an uncommonly space-wasting design. The gears have been wonky since soon after I got it in 1998, and almost entirely stripped since maybe 2001. The paper tray never sat properly. I never did get to make use of the second ink cartridge.

Both of these were acquired from A&A upon their departure; they’d bought them new less than two years before. I made several attempts to give them to repair and resale shops or otherwise recycle them greenly, but was turned down everywhere and ended up just taking them to the Sortti station in a cab. You no longer have to pay to dispose of small amounts of electronica at the Sortti station, so I treated myself to taking the cab onwards to Malmi railway station. Last time, I dismissed the cab and tried to walk to a bus line, but ended up getting lost in the forest for about an hour. The Sortti station is really in the most inaccessible place in the city. Now if only YTV would institute curbside recycling for glass, paper, etc., or restore the Arabia recycling point which they took away when the tram line shifted, we’d be in business.

minimalist

2 October 2006

At the Steve Reich concert on Saturday night I had that rare feeling of being at an important event. The program began with Piano Phase in which two pianists start with an eight-note figure in unison, move out of phase and then back together, and then one drops out and the other reduces the figure to four notes and then nothing. It is amazing how much Paavali Jumppanen can communicate with four notes and I suppose that’s why he’s a star. The applause lasted longer than any I have ever heard in that hall, and there were three bows. As the clapping died away, two clappers emerged from the audience performing Clapping Music, which brought the house down. This was followed immediately with Music for Pieces of Wood, and after the intermission with Music for Eighteen Musicians, which was about three times as long as my concentrated attention span but interesting nonetheless.

“The thing about these concerts is that people are coming that we’ve never seen before,” said H. Not just the usual music students, music student familiars and concert groupies but a whole underground of minimalism fans who now have the chance to hear live music. I suspect many of them are geeks who’ve discovered that minimalism is good trance music for software coding and problem solving; I remember when Glassworks replaced Dark Side of the Moon for a term as the favorite stereo-blasting album in Senior House.

The Sibelius Academy minimalism festival, clapping music, continues with conferts today and tomorrow. The piece Clapping Music was performed as an audience participation piece in London the same day, and is available as a recording on emusic among other places.

minimalism
 

Above, Reich’s Pendulum Music for microphones, amplifiers and speakers is performed in the lobby of the Academy before the second Steve Reich concert the following Tuesday. This latter concert featured Tehillim and a marimba duo by the same two clapping guys from the first concert, who make their entrances with an affectless Blue Man Group demeanor that gets me wondering if they’re going to throw paintballs, or play music. They are grad students in the percussion department and they are incredible percussion players. And clappers.