New Musical Rhythm: Toward A Reductive Analytical Method For Music Since 1900
New Musical Rhythm: Toward a Reductive Analytical Method for Music since 1900 complements existing theories by examining modes of composition that exploit non-metrical structures. Rhythmic identities that avoid or reorient the emphasis of the barline constitute the material for investigation, whether asymmetrical or tempo affecting in nature. Analyses of the works in question function simultaneously as indicators of composer ingenuity and as laboratories for the methods of examination. Following descriptions and definitions of my analytical approach, I explore excerpts from works by Stravinsky, Varese, Lutoslawski, and Carter. These examples encompass various rhythmic techniques, and follow a process of abstraction - beginning with surface (foreground) activity, then toward phrase structure (middleground), then to other large-scale temporal proportions (background). Brian Ferneyhough's Adagissimo entails a complete analysis, illustrating fore-, middle- and background levels for the entire work. This analysis synthesizes and exemplifies the types of rhythmic activity present in earlier examples, as an extensive application of both additive and tempo-fluctuating techniques.
dissertation or thesis