David's Review Corner
, January 2012
Though born in Los Angeles and having studied at the University of California, Wayne Siegel completed his education in Denmark where he has continued to live. Now established as one of Europe’s driving forces in the world of electronic music, he has composed in many genres including a science-fiction opera, Livstegn (Signs of Life). At the same time he has not wished to distance himself from concert audiences, a number of his works bringing together conventional instruments incorporated into the world of electronic music. Such is the case with the present disc which opens with Terra for mezzo-soprano and computer, and shows much more than an influence of Steve Reich, as it emerges as a version of the idiom of Reich used so successfully in Different Trains. Siegel’s other early influence stems from avant-garde-rock, and it was to be driving rhythms and pop music that he looked to form the basis for the short ballet, Bloopers, the name coming from the term for ‘mistakes’. That was completed in 2008, the year prior to Jericho 2.0, a work that takes its idea from the Biblical story of the horns that brought down the walls of Jericho. Siegel uses two trombones with a backdrop of electronics. We return to a much earlier work with the 1979 Rosewood Afternoon, a score where electronics add an echo against which the guitar soloist continues to play. In reviewing previous discs I have stated my thoughts that I don’t know where electronic music will take us, but the disc as a whole I have enjoyed.