Essentially atonal, it makes use of spoken text (drawn from Nietzsche and Heiner Miiller) and chorus on prerecorded tape, dense tone clusters
, an orchestra of winds, percussion and harp, with extra percussion instruments played on stage by the cast, and expressive vocal lines which rarely ask the 26 solo singers to do anything other than sing beautifully.
The tone clusters
which built up here were, again, spine-tingling and quite beautiful.
Here the connection between the music and the drawings crystallized; weblike parabolic mutations mirrored the swoops and soars of massed tone clusters
, stacks of vertical lines paralleled jagged bursts of seeming white noise, and a series of a mountainous peaks was transmitted as a low drone with sirenlike glissandi arcing overhead.
Prominent composers also have a brief biographical sketch with particular compositional techniques for which they might be known, for example Ligeti is known for tone clusters
164-166), Schneider describes the material as a "stormy, octatonically inflected G minor" in the orchestra, while the piano "pounds out dissonant tone clusters
His music, which covered a wide range of styles, was compared by some critics to marching band hymns or to the disconnected tone clusters
of avant-garde music.
Trombones blasted from the audience, cow bells formed links between pieces and MacGregor used wooden blocks to play tone clusters
on the piano.
Three pieces by Kurtag employ the use of graphic notation, tone clusters
, and the use of harmonics.
Theosophy, a nebulous philosophical mysticism with which these composers were associated, offers an anti-formalist language and context of meaning for the aural assault of Cowell's tone clusters
and Crawford's acerbic harmonies.
It also sounds heavily dissonant due to tone clusters
and many tritones.
Hamilton paints (and titles) his watercolors carefully, marking each piece with a distinctive harmonic vocabulary ranging from polytonality to tone clusters
and second- and seventh-based chords.
These influences, as well as his predilection for tone clusters
and more abstract constructions, are amalgamated into his individual style.