Back by popular demand (and available for the first time on CD), this boxed set of three CDs collects all the music released on a popular series of 10-inch vinyl records that were put out by Cold Blue in the early 1980s. During the Cold Blue label’s first incarnation, this music by seven West Coast composers—Barney Childs, Rick Cox, Michael Jon Fink, Peter Garland, Daniel Lentz, Read Miller, and Chas Smith—created much of the company’s reputation as a challenging and always interesting source of new music.
Although bound together by a common concern with music's basic sensuality, the pieces collected here are wide-ranging in style—process-driven works, carefully through-composed pieces, ambient soundscapes, and music that draws on influences from around the world. In instrumentation, this music is also wide-ranging—from violins accompanied by gourd rattles to an ensemble of clay ocarinas and whistles and flutes to works for piano (solo and duo), synthesizers, singers, speaking voices, cello, electric guitar and clarinet, and perhaps the only known piece of new music for pedal steel guitar accompanied by multiple dobros.
The diverse, free-spirited, genre-bending music in this set was characteristic of certain trends in West Coast music of ‘80s. And, to some degree, most of this music tangentially addressed the lingua franca of '70s minimalism—embracing certain of its aspects, fleeing others.
Matachin Dances by Peter Garland
Two Pieces for Piano Solo (1978), Piano Solo (1976), Vocalise, and Veil for Two Pianos by Michael Jon Fink
Clay Music by Barney Childs
Mile Zero Hotel and The Blueprint of a Promise by Read Miller
After, Santa Fe, October ’68, and Scircura by Chas Smith
These Things Stop Breathing and Taken From Real Life by Rick Cox
Slow Motion Mirror, Midnight White, Solar Cadence, and Dancing on the Sun by Daniel