“Two Minute Catharsis” is an exploration of how “outside” notes can fit naturally “into” a jazz composition. The listener, even without a formal understanding of jazz, should feel which phrases don’t fit in, and experience a renewed sense of balance when the harmonies return to stability. The saxophone “sings” a melody in haiku form.
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Two Minute Catharsis is a composition for Soprano Saxophone and Omnisphere drone.
The drone consists of two sounds from Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2: Dawning and Distant Dreams. I simply held a C for around two minutes. These sounds have more than one note though; an ethereal, suspended chord sounds from them.
The melodies are mostly in the C aeolian mode and since the soprano sax is a Bb instrument I had to play in D aeolian. For an emotional contrast, in certain spots I play notes very much outside of the aeolian mode, and this creates quite a bit of tension as the drone accompaniment underneath never changes. Returning back to aeolian provides some release. These melodies were all derived literally from a series of haiku (3 lines each with 5 syllables, 7 syllables and 5 syllables). I tried to make the sax lines sing the words. However, if you were to ask me who wrote them and what the words are, I would not disclose… THIS will forever remain a secret… a mystery.
The soprano saxophone was recorded in my studio with an Avantone CV-12 (tube condenser microphone) through a Focusrite Clarett 8PreX into MOTU Digital Performer software. The sax performance was a complete, unedited take.
“Conceived by Aristotle as the cleansing effect of emotional release that tragic drama has on its audience, catharsis stems from a Greek verb meaning “to purify, purge.” Today, it can be used to describe any emotional release, including a good long laugh or cry that is followed by a sense of balance and freshness afterwards.”