Cedar and oak allergy seasons happen back to back in Austin — from January to May — and I’m usually a basket case at that time. So I’m not tempting fate by going into the studio. That leaves me with free time to contemplate what’s coming up for Eponymous 4.
A number of weeks back, someone on Metafilter posted a link to an old Harpers article by Dorothy Thompson, titled "Who goes Nazi?" A single phrase jumped out at me — "from Acadia to Zenith" — and I feel compelled to work that into an Eponymous 4 project. I’m thinking it’s going to be the title of the next album, but I’m not sure what that album is going to sound like.
So we’ll see how From Acadia to Zenith inspires me.
I’ve also been listening to a lot 20th century string quartet repertoire. Before I announced the annual shinkyoku moratorium, I considered recording an album of string quartet music for NaSoAlMo 2007, an idea I’ve had for quite a while. I’ve been wanting to do my homework first, studying scores of other string quartets. But I haven’t really gotten around to acquiring many scores.
For now, I’m just absorbing all the different ways composers have approached the medium. I listened to all of Dmitri Shostakovich’s quartets in 2006, and I delved into Béla Bartók’s quartets last year. I’m revisiting Terry Riley’s Salome Dances for Peace, and I even sought out the Samuel Barber quartet from whence the Adagio for Strings came.
My first string quartet, which I wrote when I was a teenager, wears its Shostakovich and Barber influences on its sleeve. (I had just discovered Kronos Quartet around that time.) I would like this next string quartet (or two) to sound more like, well, myself. Whatever that means.