Karlheinz Stockhausen

Stimmung, for 6 vocalists & 6 microphones

    Description by James Lee

    One of Stockhausen's most accessible works, "Stimmung" ("Tuning") is based entirely on the overtones of a fundamental B-flat. It begins in a wordless vocalise suddenly interrupted by the appearance of language; the words "Gott nochmal", sung in a specific rhythmic and dynamic "model". Other models will follow, often on the names of various deities, or based around love poems written by Stockhausen. As each new "model" is introduced throughout the piece, the other singers slowly adapt their material to to include it, resulting in a constantly mutating fabric of rhythms and textures, not far removed from the work of Terry Riley or Philip Glass. In fact, one may say "Stimmung" is Stockhausen's answer to minimalism, though, as always with Stockhausen, the complexity of the intertwining rhythmic patterns and the density of the music are far from the simple repeating patterns of the minimalist school.

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    1992 Hyperion 66115