The DVD includes a one-hour conversation between John Luther Adams and percussionist Allen Otte, recorded in the composer's studio in Alaska.
...dust into dust...
velocities crossing in phase-space
Out of the many eligible composers of his generation, John Luther Adams is the greatest proponent of the American experimental tradition, a lineage that includes Ives, Cowell, Varese, Partch, Nancarrow, Cage and Tenney.
Christian Herzog, Sequenza 21
"...The music seemed to enact vast and complex natural processes, as if I were witnessing, in sonic form, the solar system forming or the continents shifting. It had an incredible visceral impact..."
Jonathan Russell, San Francisco Classical Voice
"...you really can't help but fall into its entrancing rhythms... carrying the ear through sonic white water as swiftly as it floats over a subsequent movements scored for four air-raid sirens... Adams uses these timbres to speak with a degree of nuance and subtlety that pushes buttons noise acts never quite reach."
Molly Sheridan NewMusicBox
"In some ways, this music exists beyond judgment, which I think is very much Adams's intention. One simply has to accept the different sounds as they appear and disappear. They are evocative and mysterious, but also plainspoken; there's no mystical obfuscation here. And there are many memorable passages: the waves of rising and falling inharmonic partials (or noise-bands) from the four tam-tams; the web of intersecting accelerandos and ritards in the 10-drum "velocities crossing in phase-space"; the delicate rumble of four marimbas in "clusters on a quadrilateral grid 1" and "clusters on a quadrilateral grid 4," punctuated by inscrutable silences; the jangly dance of crotales and glockenspiel in "clusters on a quadrilateral grid... "
Robert Carl, Fanfare
All of the music is pared down to the essentials, and nothing in Adams' 73-minute composition is extraneous. Different movements are characterized by the combination of instruments involved - snares, tam tams, tom-toms and bass drums, mallet percussion, and bells. ... Strange and Sacred Noise returns us to the very flashpoint of American percussion music for a fresh perspective...
David Lewis, All Music Guide
"...a powerful and important work, an immersion into an overwhelming world of sound, a participation through performance in the sounds of violence in nature."