Liza White, composer

© David Gottlieb 2011             
"Step!... opens with suspended strings and arhythmic accents from horns and percussion, before the crux of it hits: a hard, almost robotic, ever surprising shuffle. (For the record, this is a website where “robotic” is a compliment.) The strings and horns are extensions of, compatriots of, the drums, the whole thing syncopated like Leonard Bernstein or Alex North at their most rhythmically vibrant and succinct." 1/2/12

Liza White
's "Zin zin zin zin" ... employs inventive techniques such as dead bow-stops and a crunchy harmonic palette of cluster-based chords to create the feeling that we are experiencing pitchless grunts and shouts rather than musical lines... the music is passed around the quartet like a superball with great virtuosity, only to slink away at the end in four breathless puffs of sound that mimic the work's opening.  It's a tour de force of quartet writing that manages to make a vivid impression in under four minutes. 12/3/13

"The brief flair of violence... is picked up later in Liza White's "Zin zin zin zin", a similarly elaborate deployment of the Spektral's extreme technique.  White's music is visceral - the musicians stomp in-between unleashing gritty chords - and there is a weird joviality to the sounds... Fragmentary motives cycle through the different instruments, punctured by bluesy plucked notes.  It is the briefest work on the album, succinct and punchy in its effect."

"Her piece “Step!” absorbs hip-hop and the synchronized form from which it takes its name, her “Ballad of the Mean Angry Jazz Hater Monster!” likewise draws from the genere claimed by its title, and her elegant “Groove” series suggests a melodically incisive derivation of minimalism — all accomplished with an acquisitiveness that is refreshingly lacking in quotation marks." 6/27/12

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