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About the influence of soundscapes on recent contemporary classical music

Martin Kaltenecker

Nuove Musiche Numero 8 - 2021, pagine: 41-55
DOI 10.12871/97888333988394 | @ Pisa University Press 2023
Pubblicato: 20 novembre 2023


In this paper I argue that during the 20th century the paradigm of Sound replaced the former model focusing on Structure. Eventually, a musical work is no longer (or is no longer described as) a critical structure, but as a listening device allowing us to better perceive the micro-physics of Sound. Moreover, typical features of art music since the 1980s include a special attention given to the performance space as a place imbued with echoes or half-forgotten narratives. Music, as it were, is “going flat”, or “going horizontal”, following a general shift from the vertical to the horizontal in our postmodern world. I illustrate this move with references to works of Pierre Henry, Helmut Lachenmann, Luigi Nono, and Olga Neuwirth.

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