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Dig if u will my research paper Chapter 4

Chapter 4
The Compositional Language Of Early Live-Looping Music, and How It Departed
>From Music Of That Time.
Compositional Langauge ­Riley and the Time-Lag Accumulator.
The Time-Lag Accumulator was crucial to Terry Rileyıs musical language. It
gave him the freedom to perform and compose music in a way which was
previously impossible. Riley has never seen himself as a traditional
composer who sits down at a desk and writes music, Riley is much more a
performer who composes music. His performance based approached to writing
music was clearly one of the driving forces behind his extensive use of the
Time-Lag Accumulator system. It was the Time-Lag-Accumulator alongside the
work of La Monte Young that lead Rileyıs music to become obsessed with
Tape delay clearly influenced the way Riley thought about repetition and 
aesthetic results. From the cut up and layered phrases of Music For The 
Riley discovered how carefully constructed modal phrases layered upon each
other could produce truly beautiful results. This gave him the inspiration
for writing the seminal work In C which has all the characteristics of 
For The Gift but with live musicians taking the place of Time-Lag
Accumulation. After In C Rileyıs work became more and more about pushing 
boundaries of repetition and its use in live performance.
 The Time-lag Accumulator allowed Riley the freedom to create counterpoint
with a solo instrument layering phrases in an ensemble effect. This is
perhaps best heard on his 1968 recording Poppy No Good and The Phantom Band
where Rileyıs soprano saxophone is layered time and time again to create
huge washes of sound. Riley also made full use of the two separate tracks 
the Time-lag Accumulator to control the interaction between two layers of
accompaniment. Riley used this feature to seamlessly fade phrases out of 
music whilst bringing new material in giving compositions like Dorian Reedı
a wonderful seamlessly evolving structure. When I asked Terry Riley about
the role he felt the Time-Lag Accumulator occupied in his performances he
replied ³A most central one as it supplied the polyphonic richness against
which could surround the audience in a cyclic and swirling universe of
The use of Live-Looping to create layers of sound also has a crucial
psychological effect on the performer that makes it quite different to
playing with an ensemble. It makes the player instantly listen back to
themselves examining all the details of their expression, this kind of 
refection causes the player to react to the subtle imperfections in timing
and pitching of the material. This gives an entirely different effect to 
soloist/ accompanist scenario where each player will vary their performance
even when looping repetitive phrases. Also in Live-Looping the performer is
layering only one performerıs personality, this differs in effect to that 
an ensemble which combines different performerıs individual voices.
    Another significant characteristic of Rileyıs work that differed from
that of other experimental composers of the time was the reintroduction of 
pulse into music. This was what gave Rileyı s music such great crossover
potential. Riley stated the importance of the pulse as providing a constant
from which one could get ³as far out as you want² . This pulse as in a lot
of Jazz and eastern music gave Riley the constant he needed to take his
music into extremes of improvisation without ever losing the overall
character of the music.

Riley, Cage and The European Tradition
In chapter two I talked about the high modernist influence of John Cage 
so engulfed the avant-garde music world. I also looked at some of the
musical language of Musique Concrete. I now would like to relate these two
things to early live-looping music.
Cage studied with Schoenberg and the influence of Serialism and its
modernist ideals characterised his music. Some of his chance music bears an
aesthetic surface strikingly similar to that of the serially composed music
to which it is so adamantly opposed. The work of Riley and indeed that of
other Minimalist composers differs from that of Cage (and other 
composers who relied on complex systems of chance to remove their own
deliberate actions from their compositions) in the audibility of the 
behind the music. In Cageıs work the chance processes he used are there to
deliberately obscure any sense of a perceivable structure or organisation,
where as in Rileyıs work the process is the most visible part of the
Cage tried to move on from Serialism and the European style of composition,
however it could be argued that it was Minimalism through the work of Riley
alongside other composers such as La Monte Young that truly broke away from
this genre of modernist composition. Minimalism replaced the high modernist
ideal of ever increasingly complex compositions and complex thought
processes with a much more simplistic approach. The music of the 
is characterised by a return to conventional harmony and reinstatement of
the pulse back into experimental music. When one looks at the language and
motivation of the music that came before Terry Rileyıs Time-lag Accumulator
compositions it becomes clear just how revolutionary they were. This was
true American experimental music that had finally broken away from the
European tradition. This was a symbolic change in the direction of
experimental music that would go on to be described as part of the movement
of post-modernism.
There are however similarities between the music of the Minimalists and the
music of Cage. Cage created the idea of music as a surface for the audience
to look into, the most extreme example of this was his piece 4ı33². This
idea of a surface is one of the strongest characteristics of Minimalist
music. The idea that once the music has started the listener is presented
with a wash of sound as opposed to being lead through a piece via peaks and
troughs. It seems unlikely that Minimalism could have found this aesthetic
were it not for the work of Cage.
 It also seems poignant that the music took on a free improvisatory 
this fitted well with the social climate in the East Coast of America at
that time. The Hippy movement with its emphasis on freedom, 
and getting high was intrinsically linked to the character of Rileyıs 
He adopted a modal approach to his music unlike that of Cage and the
Serialistıs saying it didnıt interfere with the state of consciousness he
achieved when using marijuana. Cageıs music was often characterised by
elaborate systems of presenting chance to remove the composerıs intent,
whereas Rileyıs music through improvisation gradually displayed an
increasing desire to get closer to the essence of himself. Eventually
culminating in a break from performance to study full time with Prada Nath.

The Concrete influence
In chapter three I put forward the argument for the evolution of tape delay
from the continuous experimentation with the medium of tape that began with
Musique Concrete. Although some of Rileyıs early Time-Lag pieces e.g. She
Moves Me owed a lot to the compositional language of Musique Concrete,
eventually a new language began to emerge. By the time Riley had begun
Keyboard studies in 1964 his integration of technology into performance was
completely different to the use of tape technology in Musique Concrete. A
Concrete composer would typically spend huge amounts of time editing their
tape loops into their chosen form, by 1964 Riley felt this ³is more like
composing, which I never enjoyed ­ sitting at a desk and writing music.
Thatıs why I put my music down on a tiny sheet of paper and spend all my
time playingı . Riley had abandoned the complex tape editing and assembling
of sounds that characterised his earlier work in favour of processing his
live instrument improvisations with the Time-Lag Accumulator. By doing this
Riley succeeded in creating a whole new method for music composition that
was no longer simply reliant on the precedent of Musique Concrete. It was
here that Terry Riley can be said to have created Live-Looping with the 
that a performer can accompany themselves in live performance through the
use of delay.