Premiered: Members of the 2013 Fresh Inc. Festival
Duration: eight minutes
Instrumentation: two violas, two violoncellos, two contrabasses
When tasked with composing a work for two violas, two cellos, and two basses, my first thoughts were to the range of the ensemble. This is essentially an ensemble of low voices, after all. I sought to maximize this feature by creating a work focused on establishing a complex bass line groove one element at a time. GROOVE INCUBATION does just that.
The piece opens with several textural elements trying to establish a basic harmonic language. Eventually, the task moves toward discovering a simple pulse, then a basic meter, and so on, until the first element is solidified in the basses. The piece continues this process, adding layers one at a time, until it builds into a dense stacking of rhythmic ideas, complete with several percussive elements as a kind of trap set surrogate.