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Thread: Harmonic Stasis

  1. #1
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    Default Harmonic Stasis

    1) Songs are usually based on chord progressions. Those clusters of notes (that might be on a piano or guitar) that the melody rides over. They give a sense of movement and narrative. You subconsciously tend to perceive these chord progressions by the bass.



    2) Modal jazz changed that by not changing chords for ages in the bass. The bass just staying on one chord for ages. This gives a feeling of stillness.







    3) This was introduced to funk by the track 'cold sweat', which it has been acknowledged was a rip off of pioneering modal jazz track 'so what'





    5) From funk it made its way into rap. this gives lots of that 90's rap its weedness. if it was moving round harmonically it wouldn't add that sense meditation.













    6) another way of doing modal jazz is to just go back and forth between two chords. which you get in rap as well







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    Default grime

    the bass is doing the same thing in these as it does in coltrane's 'favourite things':









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    Quote Originally Posted by sadmanbarty View Post
    1) Songs are usually based on chord progressions. Those clusters of notes (that might be on a piano or guitar) that the melody rides over. They give a sense of movement and narrative.

    2) Modal jazz changed that by not changing chords for ages in the bass. The bass just staying on one chord for ages. This gives a feeling of stillness.
    “we’ve lost the plot”. Ardcore abolishes narrative: instead of tension/climax/release, it offers a thousand plateaux of crescendo, an endless successions of NOWs
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    Default jungle







    Quote Originally Posted by vimothy View Post
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    well, listen to this whilst you're having a shower and see what you think. just let it play in the background, don't analyse it. treat it as drone.

    https://www.mixcloud.com/oldie_but_g...stgast-mix-06/
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    of course as you very well know middle eastern and indian music have no polyphonic counter-point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thirdform View Post
    of course as you very well know middle eastern and indian music have no polyphonic counter-point.
    yeah, most non-european musics don't have these moving harmonies. miles said he was inspired to do modal jazz by seeing some ballet with african music. coltrane was clearly inspired by indian music.

    it's only a novelty in western music.
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    Quote Originally Posted by thirdform View Post
    well, listen to this whilst you're having a shower and see what you think. just let it play in the background, don't analyse it. treat it as drone.

    https://www.mixcloud.com/oldie_but_g...stgast-mix-06/
    my poor rectum
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    Also the essence of the deepest blues and old-time music:


    (the drone strings on the dulcimer and banjo obv. emhasise this)
    and going further back, Sacred Harp/shape note singing has the "one chord wonder" style, where the 4 melodic lines almost entirely stay within various voicings of the tonic chord, e.g.:

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    Quote Originally Posted by thirdform View Post
    of course as you very well know middle eastern and indian music have no polyphonic counter-point.
    It's not just no counterpoint, though - in the case of Indian classical at least it's that the harmony is, to a first approximation, static. To my Western-attuned ears, the lack of tension-release signalled by harmonic cadences ("...and II V I and we're done") means that you end up with a sort of consistent slight tension instead. I don't get the same thing from modal jazz, which IME generally has _some_ harmonic movement even if it's dialled back a lot from the endlessly shifting changes in bebop, but I do get it to some extent from the more groove-driven post-fusion Miles stuff.

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