Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Music For the Gift/Bird of Paradise

It's a surprise and a shame that there isn't more written about Terry Riley's early tape works, 'Music for the Gift' and 'Bird of Paradise'. Both were released in the first half of the 60's, a good 4 or 5 years before 'Come Out' and 'It's Gonna Rain', and are both just as groundbreaking as Reich's tape experiments. Why these aren't grouped alongside Riley's more popular works ('In C', 'Rainbow in Curved Air'), is a mystery to me.

The most interesting thing about listening to these pieces today is how relevant they still sound. The expressive, improvisatory, skronky noises of 'Birds of Paradise' stand up to the work of any modern day social registry/ecstatic peace knob twiddler. There are moments in there that sound as if they came straight out of Creature Comforts--but like, 40+ years ahead of time:

Terry Riley - 'Music for the Gift part 2'
Terry Riley - 'Music for the Gift part 3'
Terry Riley - 'Music for the Gift part 5'
Terry Riley - 'Bird of Paradise part 1'
Terry Riley - 'Bird of Paradise part 2'
Terry Riley - 'Bird of Paradise part 5'

1 comment:

Jukka said...

Thanks so very much for these!

..But could you please repost those 'bird of paradise' tracks because they are no longer available?

And how about these from the same cd?

Mescalin Mix (1960-62)
Concert for Two Piano's and Five Tape Recorders with La Monte Young (1960)

I have 'Reed Streams' from this 'Organ of Corti' series and could post it to you if you like?