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Bunny Games - Excerpt 1
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Bernhard Gander

Bunny Games

Label: Kairos

Format: CD

Genre: Compositional

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** In process of stocking ** Bunny Games is not only semantically loaded by the solo passages in the foreground in which the instruments constantly seek to draw attention to themselves, but also through references to the music of Domenico Scarlatti and Edgar Varèse as well as the Madonna numbers “Nothing really matters and Hangup”, the latter a cover version of the ABBA song “Give me a man after midnight.” The relation to popular music, which - between the lines - was always present with Bernhard Gander breaks through continually and directly: thus ö for bass flute, bass clarinet, accordion, viola and violin cello (2006) refers to the heavy metal group Motörhead. The rhythmic structure and formal dramaturgy may follow easily comprehensible processes, with the heavy metal influence reaching as far as the repeated refrain, thus in an ironic way creating a relation to the formal classical canon. But alongside that there is also a process of disintegration - motivated by the conception of contrasting materials capable of transforming each other, such as stone, which disintegrates under the action of sulphuric acid - so that the block-like, strongly percussive phrase is sporadically made more transparent.

The same is true for fluc’n’flex (2007), which is written for accordion, one of the favourite instruments of Bernhard Gander, to which he has also given a prominent role in his ensemble pieces, and which appears to be absolutely predestined for rich interplay of perspective, between foreground and background. “In new music, the accordion usually stays in the background playing gentle sounds. But it can be a very brutal instrument.” The subject matter is also brutal: going out at night to the two Vienna bars Fluc and Flex. As if one is on the way to the bars, one can gradually hear the bass in the rumble of the music being played there, before the attempt begins to transport drum’n’bass, Techno, Rap in which ever transformed form. Rapidly pulsing, with swelling crescendi and dense diffuse polyphonies, the instrument works itself into an almost intoxicated state, before it with great virtuosity and turbulence draws to an end. Here too Bernhard Gander devotes himself with the inexhaustible energy of the original power of the elements - to bending and breaking. All quotations are taken from commentary by Bernhard Gander on his own works and from a conversation with the composer on 5.6.200 

Details
Cat. number: 0012682KAI
Year: 2020

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