Originally posted on September 7, 2010
Electric guitar ablaze, Dillon Kondor walked onstage already playing Tristan Murail’s 1984 piece Vampyr!, taking the audience completely off-guard. The piece sounded like a Van Halen solo, sans the rest of the band, with much wailing, whammying, and feedback. “Auxiliary” guitarist Kobe van Cauwenberghe added to the shredding magic from above in the sound booth. Following this bombardment of sound was perhaps the quietest piece of music ever written, Morton Feldman’s 1981 For Aaron Copland, lovingly played by Joshua Modney, his muted violin seemingly picking notes out of the ether to create a delicate strand of serendipity.
Next came an impassioned and nuanced arrangement by Modney/Kondor of “Opening” from Philip Glass’ Glassworks, followed by Modney playing a typically arcane and athletic violin work (Invisible Colors) by Brian Ferneyhough. The last two pieces were written by composers who were present at the concert: Drake Andersen’s Photons III for electric guitar and laptop sounded like drifting in lonely outer-space, while Sam Pluta’s American Tokyo Daydream II (Incognito) for guitar, violin, and laptop exhibited a disconcerting lack of self-control in its seeming pursuit of sonic chaos. Modney/Kondor donated the proceeds of their concert to the Josh Oxford Recovery Fund. This concert was the season opener for Ear Heart Music, a modern chamber music series held at The Tank on Tuesdays.