The Squid's Ear Magazine

Strycharski / Andriessen: Ghost (Bolt)

Polish composer and recorder player Dominik Strycharski wrote these pieces in response to a work for the recorder by composer Louis Andriessen that he dedicated to Frans Bruggen: "Melodie"; Strycharski response is "Harmonie", performed in a duo with pianist Sebastian Zawadzki to demonstrate the impracticability of harmony in its purest forms.

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Dominik Strycharski-recorders

Sebastian Zawadzki-piano

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Label: Bolt
Catalog ID: BR 1039
Squidco Product Code: 25250

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2017
Country: Poland
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold 3 Panels
Recorded at the Xawery Museum of Sculpture at Krolikarnia Palace, in Warsaw, Poland on January 14th and 15th, 2017, by Michal Kupicz

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"The story of this album began with the idea of composing my response to Melodie - one of the Louis Andriessen's pieces dedicated to Frans Bruggen. At first, I searched for information on the circumstances in which Louis Andriessen's specific composition was created. As it has quickly turned out, however, I'm not so much interested in these circumstances any more. I have realized that this piece is a presentiment but also a goodbye. A farewell to the spirit of community. The community which - despite delicate disharmony (microtones) and dissonances - holds together until the end.

Andriessen's piece stands out against 20th-century compositions for recorder: it's an almost unceasing unison of two instruments; the melody is almost stretched into ambient, although it's never fully transparent, it never loses its narrative qualities. We will not find in it widely exploited extended techniques. Instead, there ism continuum and absolute simplicity. This is why I wrote Melodie's alter ego - Harmonie. I wanted to show that harmony, which we still need, has become impossible. And that perfect harmonization is a great effort and a great goal which is in fact impracticable.

The planned split sounds unison of the recorder and the piano in reality rattles with microtone shifts; the desired unity is implemented in the form which is unbearable in terms of sound, wearying and exceptionally mechanical. The ending of the piece, however, brings some relief. The musicians are left with the remains of the musical language reduced to a few signals - in fact, they may co-function in the short, rhythmically improvised episode ad libitum. This "true" harmony - in contrary to artificial identicalness - is possible through loosening of the rules and synchronicity. In the conditions of ambiguity and controlled, acceptable freedom."-Dominik Strycharski

Artist Biographies

"Dominik Strycharski: A Polish composer, blockflute player, singer, improviser, performer and writer. He plays and composes contemporary jazz in many electric and acoustic incarnations, contemporary music, electronic music, theater music, post-hip-hop, noise as well as various types of improvised music in his own bands: Pulsarus, Prophetic Fall and Organic Panic Quartett. He also works with contemporary vocal techniques and plays improvised and jazz music on modern recorders/blockflutes.

Pulsarus (Dominik Strycharski - processed blockflutes, vocals, electronics, leader, Jakub Rutkowski - acoustic and electronic drums, Alexander Papierz - saxophones) made its debut album Digital Freejazz in May 2005. The band performed at the festival Arhytmic Depot Art in Gdansk in 2005 and twice at Warsaw Summer Jazz Days (2005 and 2006), as well as JAZ festival in Zabrze and Slot Art Festival in Lubiąż. In 2006 their second album was released, with guest apperance of Tomasz Gwincinski. Squared Rotoscope was produced by Piotr Pawlak.2009 saw the release of the third and the most important album of the trio so far, FAQ. Among other venues, Pulsarus appeared at Warsaw Summer Jazz Days, Avant Festival, Art Depot, Slot Art Festival, Transvisualia, Cinema on the Border, the Malta Festival in Berlin, the Polish Cultural Center, Era New Horizons, in Recklinghausen and in many clubs as well.

Strycharski is widely recognized as a composer of music for theatre. He also creates Doministry, a multi-dimensional solo project that combines contemporary electronic music, performance and electro-ambient. It is developed using the voice and its total electronic transformation. Improvisation plays a very important role in the project, which is open to all possible influences and concepts. Since 2001, as a composer and performer, he has been a part of Bretoncaffe Theatre, which was awarded several times. Theatre performances created by the group are staged regularly at Polish and international festivals (Berlin, Tallinn, Paris, Budapest, Prague)."

-Culture.PL (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Sebastian Zawadzki is a composer, pianist, conductor, collaborator and producer who has released several albums and collaborated with renowned artists. Inspired equally by classical, electronic and jazz music, Zawadzki's sonic world blends a formal classical training with modern technology. He graduated from the Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen, the Academy of Music in Cracow and ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop with Richard Bellis in Los Angeles in 2016.

Sebastian started out as a jazz pianist. At the age of 22 he ended up being signed by a Polish record label Fortune Records. As a leader and producer he released a minimalistic improvised piano solo album "Luminescence" (2014) and the works composed for a jazz piano trio and string quartet "Euphony" (2015). He has also released more music as a side-man and co-leader. At the same time Sebastian was also absorbed by classical music. As a result of his studies he wrote classical compositions - among others "Concerto for Bassoon and Chamber Orchestra" (2016), performed by Leszek Wachnik and Warsaw Camerata in 2016 at IX Festiwal Nowego Miasta in Warsaw.

The first releases by Sebastian were mostly in a genre of acoustic jazz but Sebastian was increasingly becoming more interested in composition and exploring sonic world by adding other artistic elements - mostly collaborating with classical musicians and experimenting with electronic sounds, but at the same time striving to simplify his works and give it a characteristic flavour. His entry into the neo-classical field is the CD "Between the Dusk of a Summer Night" (2017) recorded with the Symphony Orchestra of Budapest was enriched with additional electronic ambient sounds.

His latest concert project "Norn" (2018) for a string quartet, bazantar, flute, improvising voices and modular synthesis, is maintained in a similar convention as the previous project, but it's emphasizing even more a dialog between acoustic and electronic sound pallets. It will have it's CD release date in the beginning of 2018 but the concert premiere has already taken place at the Forte Artus Festival in November 2017 in Poland.

Besides his own projects Sebastian works as a film composer, arranger and conductor. He has provided the scores for a couple of films and documentaries. A short film by Sicilla Luna "Nu vandrer livet" had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016.

A collaboration with Copenhagen Phil (Danish Symphony Orchestra) played a significant role on Sebastian's artistic development. He expanded arrangements and made orchestrations of rock and pop bands for symphonic orchestra (the music of bands When Saint Goes Machine, Den Sorte Skole and Lowly). He has also worked as an arranger and orchestrator of oscar-winning film composer Jan A.P. Kaczmarek - he arranged and orchestrated his music "Enigma, Symfonia bez Konca" (2016)."

-Sebastian Zawadzki Website (

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

Track Listing:

1. Louis Andriessen Melodie 24:35

2. Ghost 1:53

3. Dominik Strycharski Harmonie 20:07

Related Categories of Interest:

Compositional Forms
Duo Recordings
Piano & Keyboards
New in Compositional Music

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The Squid's Ear Magazine

The Squid's Ear Magazine

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