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Machover: “Flora,” “Towards the Center,” “Famine,” “Bug-Mudra.”...

Machover: “Flora,” “Towards the Center,” “Famine,” “Bug-Mudra.” The New York New Music Ensemble; Electric Phoenix; David Starobin and Oren Fader, guitars; Daniel Kennedy, percussion. Bridge BCD 9020 (compact disc). This disc is a musically visceral, sonically vivid introduction to Tod Machover’s technological wizardry. All the pieces are computer-enhanced, though in very different ways--"Flora” is an eerie tape transformation of soprano Karol Bennett’s voice, “Famine” adds the chittering amplified voices of Electric Phoenix to a self-consciously neurotic electronic mix, while “Towards the Center” and “Bug-Mudra” are ensemble tours de force with live electronic processing. Under the techno-glitter lies some often banal and/or arid composing, but the performances are breath-taking, easily communicating the excitement of new media.


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