The Squid's Ear Magazine

Dykstra, Jordan: Stressings (Editions Verde)

Exploring diverse landscapes and moments of extreme behavior changes through a single acoustic viola, composed and performed by Jordan Dykstra, in four pieces that vary his approach to the instrument through overlapping tones, drones, extended techniques and rolling cycles, performed in California at the California Institute of the Arts and at the Cathedral of Saint Vibiana.

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product information:

Limited edition of 200 copies. Two-pocket color-printed wallet with 6-panel insert comprising text of a 24 hour day of observations.

UPC: 07554917620

Label: Editions Verde
Catalog ID: EV003
Squidco Product Code: 33618

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2016
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Tracks 1, 3 and 4 recorded at the BCS in Val Verde, California, in June and July, 2015, by Jordan Dykstra.

Track 2 recorded in the Wild Beast, at the California Institute fo the Arts, in Valencia, California, in March, 2015, by Jordan Dykstra.

Viola solo in track 4 recorded at the Cathedral of Saint Vibiana, in Los Angeles, California, in April, 2015, by Colleen Lutz.


Jordan Dykstra-viola, composer

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Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Stressings is an album by Jordan Dykstra and is composed for, and consists only of, acoustic viola.

Traversing diverse landscapes, Stressings aims to explore these textures through the liminality of the viola, what psychoanalysts view at the moment of extreme behavior changes, the historical story told by layers of rock and sediment, and, amongst others, how painstakingly obvious a sunset can be.

Drawing partly from a graphic language, Stressings' narrative weaves through such vantage points as being from on top of a mountain to a gutted valley."-Editions Verde

Limited edition of 200 copies. Two-pocket color-printed wallet with 6-panel insert comprising text of a 24 hour day of observations.

Artist Biographies

"Jordan Dykstra (b. 1985, Sioux City, Iowa) is a Brooklyn-based violist and composer exploring the performer-composer-listener relationship through the incorporation of conceptual, graphic, and text-based elements. In 2007 he moved to Portland, OR and became involved in the experimental music scene in the Pacific NW. Aside from performing and recording with individuals and bands - including Dirty Projectors, A Winged Victory for the Sullen with Hildur Guðnadóttir, Atlas Sound, and Valet - he worked at Marriage Records and Publishing House. In 2014 he received a Career Opportunity Grant from the Oregon Arts Commission to apprentice with Daníel Bjarnason, composer and conductor of the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra, in Reykjavík, Iceland. He received his BFA in 2016 under Michael Pisaro, Ulrich Krieger, and Wolfgang von Schweinitz at the California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles. In 2018 he received his MA in Experimental Composition from Wesleyan University in Connecticut where - under the mentorship of Alvin Lucier and astrophysicist Seth Redfield - his thesis explored connections between microtonality and the cosmic distance ladder. In 2019 he received a Cultural Grant from the Netherlands-America Foundation to compose "The Arrow of Time" and premiere the work with Reinier van Houdt in Amsterdam. In 2020 The Arrow of Time was listed as one of the best Modern Composition albums by The Wire and included in The Best Contemporary Classical Albums of 2020 by Bandcamp. As a media composer he has numerous credits including the films Blow the Man Down, Hail Satan?, It Comes At Night, and the 2019 Emmy winner for Outstanding Investigative Documentary Documenting Hate. His compositions for film have been heard at Cannes, Sundance, TriBeCa, TIFF, and the IFFR. His performance highlights include MOCA (CA), Harpa (Iceland), Musikfestval Bern (Switzerland), Ftarri (Tokyo), CHAFF (Brussels), Echo Bücher (Berlin), Syros Institute (Greece), Yale Union (OR), Big Ears Festival (TN), and the RISD Museum (RI). Recordings of his music (solo and collaborative) have been issued by New World Records, Domino, Milan, Marriage, Mexican Summer, K, Gilgongo, and Dykstra's own cottage industry label Editions Verde."

-Jordan Dykstra Website (

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Track Listing:

1. A Distant Continuum Towards (Annealing) 10:17

2. I'm Not a Horse Person, Dog (Accretion) 20:02

3. No Going Back Before Present (Anthropocene) 10:10

4. Vibiana (Absence) 10:21

Related Categories of Interest:

Compositional Forms
Stringed Instruments
Graphic Scores
NY Downtown & Metropolitan Jazz/Improv
New in Compositional Music
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