by Russell Wharton
Instrumentation: Concert snare drum, Field drum (or deep concert snare drum), Rasping (scraper stick), Playback system
Phylogenesis is a work for a solo percussionist using two snare drums and audio. The title refers to the evolutionary history and development of an organism, and the musical development within the piece loosely mirrors that concept.
Russell Wharton creates a mesmerizing array of timbres and effects through use of a rasping (scraper) stick, a muted drum, and a numerous other playing techniques. Strong command of rudimental language is necessary, but musical sensitivity and a good feel for odd metered ostinato is equally, if not more important.
The accompanying audio track (included on CD-ROM) is initiated by the performer about one-third of the way into the piece and it provides clever use of acoustic imitation, creating a duo of sorts between soloist and audio.
Phylogenesis is bound to stand out as one of the more creative snare drum solos in contemporary repertoire This piece ships as a professionally spiral bound folio with a full color cover. Audio accompaniment track is included on CD-ROM.