Steve Reich

New York Counterpoint / Eight Lines / Four Organs

Available for the first time on a single disc, the Bang on a Can recordings of Steve Reich’s Four Organs (1970), Eight Lines (Octet) (1979), and New York Counterpoint (1985), first appeared as part of the 10-CD box set Works 1965–1995, released in 1996 to commemorate Reich’s 60th birthday. These works, newly recorded by Bang on a Can in 1996, span the early part of the composer’s distinguished career, one whose style has been called “fiercely original, immediately recognizable and wholly accessible” (New York Times).

Steve Reich, dubbed “America’s greatest living composer” by The Village Voice, is often identified with the Minimalist movement for the spare and stark rigor of his earlier works, although he has evolved into a composer of complex vision. The release of Works 1965–1995 traced his journey from youthful experiments with found sound to multi-layered works for groups ranging from chamber ensembles to full orchestras, and from two-track tape to multiple-channel video operas in collaboration with Beryl Korot. The single disc release of Four Organs, Eight Lines, and New York Counterpoint demonstrates the composer at an early stage of his career, who has since remained faithful to his style while evolving into one of the most respected and accomplished composers working today.


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April 21, 2000
Steve Reich