Music 20 MW 2-5
Professor Manuel Buresan
August 28, 2013
On August 27th, 2013. I attended an Alt-J∆ concert at the Hollywood Palladium. I went in to the concert intending to be an informed and perceptive critical listener, but found myself just being blown away by the experience. The piece from the concert I would like to analyze would be my personal favorite songs by Alt-J∆, Fitzpleasure.
The textures on stage consist of a bass guitar, a guitar, electronic keyboard with digital effects, drums and some sort of idiophone. Through out the piece the tempo was a simple and strait forward quadruple at about 70 beats per minute.
This secular piece starts off monophonic adagio a capella melody of vocal sound somewhat resembling the embellishments of an English Madrigal with added reverb. After two measures the monophonic vocals turn to heterophony vocals. The textures of a snare drum and high hat are also added at this time. Pause. The lead singer/ guitarist sings part of the chorus “A”, followed by a forte bass melody and some sort of idiophone. The bass, drums and idiophone play for a measure, brought back to the “tra la las” then the lead singer sings section B of the piece while ritardando. Immediately fallowed by a piano ostinato guitar solo.
The tempo of the chordophone (guitar) goes allegro, paired with an allegro percussion in a very conjunct manor. The piano guitar stops, forte bass comes back with a variation of section B. All instruments cut out presto; the lead singer continues to sing a piece of section B. After one measure the bass, drums, guitar and other idiophones come back for another measure imitating the same melody previously. The melody becomes the timber of ascending 16th notes on the guitar, portraying the imagery of floating away and feeling of dissonance.
After two bars, while “floating away” the lead singer sings part C. One bar into Part C the other singers/ bass player/ and keyboard player (random idiophones) add polyphonic embellishment. This is accompanied by the membranophones (drum kit). At this point the lead singer/ guitarist broke into an improvised chordophone solo for about 8 measures. This was brought back full circle to the forte bass, drums, guitar and the chorus “A” con passione. After the chorus was sang the instrumental continues for a couple measures. The instrumental continues with some more tra la las’. The bass, idiophones and guitar continue to play the same melody as the drum changes its original melody and the singer sings “ohhh ohhh ohhh” in a crescendo manner. “Blended by the lights” and a fading out