“What if a first-rate American musician seriously studied Balinese gamelan and started to combine it with electric bass, bowed bass and processed samples of gamelan sounds, all done with a sympathetic ear out for techno and rock? Well, one has, and his name is Evan Ziporyn. Take a listen to the third track of Amok! and elsewhere on this CD to hear the results.”–Steve Reich
Since 1979, Evan Ziporyn, a member of the Bang on a Can All Stars, has devoted an extraordinary amount of effort toward the study and performance of traditional Balinese music. The results of his creative endeavors elude classification in cultural pigeonholes.
Both works on this disc are extended pieces for full Balinese gamelan with various Western instruments. Tire Fire is written for gamelan and electric guitars while Amok! is scored for gamelan and digital sampler. In both pieces, Ziporyn explores the blurring of boundaries that results from the interaction between Western technology and Balinese gamelan. His quest for cross-cultural epiphanies never privileges one tradition over the other, but fuses both in a riot of rhythm and color that redefines the term world music. (airplaneears)