Looking through a microscope is like opening a door. Depending on what you find, it can be frightening or comforting. It can affirm truths that you expected to find, or it can surprise you by revealing unanticipated shapes, colors, and movements. When Trey Pollard composed the pieces of his contemporary classical chamber debut, 2018’s 'Antiphone,' he used the musical language that he had honed over years of creative composing, pop arranging, and recreational fugue writing to make a beautiful macro-organism that, when put under a microscope, surprised even him.
That’s how Pollard describes Roberto Carlos Lange’s 'Antiphone' remixes: like zooming in on an atom and seeing a whole galaxy. “There are these vast landscapes inside that I didn't know were there,” Pollard says of Lange's (also known as Helado Negro) take on “8 Pairs: Prelude VIII," subtitled “Bend Remix.” On that and four other reinterpretations of pieces from 'Antiphone,' Lange focuses in on a few choice moments and tweaks its DNA to create new sounds, moods, and narratives in each. He explains: "I would sample small sections of music in the composition and loop them and combine them with other sections of the composition matching up different looped measures. The rest then became laying out flow and using audio effects and time-stretching as a compositional tool. It was a meditative process and the structure of all the pieces came so fast."
Pollard likens it to “found art,” where sonic elements are used to create something totally different. The result is one that brings the composer comfort. "When you conceive of a musical *thing*,” he explains, "it's beneficial to only be able to imagine it working in one way. It helps you finish it with confidence. Otherwise, you get bogged down with 'option anxiety.' So to hear those structures function in a different way is affirming.”
Pollard and Lange have worked together before: Pollard contributed string arrangements and pedal steel to three Helado Negro albums starting in 2013, including 'Private Energy' (Asthmatic Kitty) in 2016, and one large-scale performance of 'Island Universe Story' at St. Paul’s Ordway Center. So looking at Antiphone under a microscope was somewhat familiar territory for Lange. "Trey has a way of making pieces that feel like they have no edges, they always feel multi-sensory,” he explains. "I was hoping to amplify that."
released April 15, 2020
Electronics - Roberto Carlos Lange
Violins - Adrian Pintea, Anna Bishop, Catherine Cary, Ellen Riccio, Jeanette Jang, Meredith Riley, Stacy Matthews, Treesa Gold, Violaine Michel
Violas - Caleb Paxton, Jocelyn Smith, Kimberly Ryan, Molly Sharp
Cellos - Jason McComb, Peter Greydanus, Schuyler Slack, Stephanie Barrett
Bass- Ayca Kartari, Matt Gold
Piano - Wells Hanley
Produced by Roberto Carlos Lange
Executive Producer - Trey Pollard
Recorded by Adrian Olsen at Montrose Recording
Mixed by Roberto Carlos Lange
Mastered by Trey Pollard