Santa Cruz, CA
In the early 1970s, James Brody was an aspiring composer on the verge of a brilliant career. Having studied composition at Indiana University with Xenakis, Brody was an authority on electro-acoustic and stochastic methods, writing the liner notes for the original Nonesuch LP 'Iannis Xenakis - Electroacoustic Music'. He was awarded a position in composition, theory and electronic music at East Texas State University…and then he disappeared.
He was still composing and active until his death in 2010 in a car crash with his friend and former teacher Franz Kamin.
AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE
High-tech electroacoustic music fills the new disc by James Brody. Yet it sounds more physical than technical. It reminds me somehow of the distant and lonely sound world of Vladamir Ussachevsky's musique concrete of the 1960s, except that Brody's sounds attract the ear more--no surprise after 40 years of technological development. Brody's real inspiration is Xenakis, to whom be dedicates Syllepsis, the longest and most recent piece. Over the course of a quarter of an hour, it builds up several layers, creating a white heat of intensity that only barely subsides in the last few seconds. What pleases me most about Brody's music, however, is how it straddles the divide between deadly seriousness and whimsical humor. Perhaps for that reason I prefer Turnings. Brody created it using the Metasynth software package "which enables one to work in the graphics domain". It's a gentle barrage of quick bleeps, bursts, squiggles, shakes, saws, and low drones--ear-candy for the electroacoustic music aficionado. All of the music on this release explores percussive sounds--acoustic, electronic, or both together. Yet two of the works also display Brody's fondness for pulse rhythms. Supposedly, Theta Ticker explores possible correlations between musical rhythm and brain waves; I hear it as an exploration of evenly spaced percussive pulses layered together. ...If you already enjoy electroacoustic or percussion music, then you won't want to miss this well-produced release.." - Josh Mailman