Anthony Brown

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Percussionist and ethnomusicologist Anthony Brown and his Eclipse Ensemble as well as his San Jose Taiko band are featured here, performing two long suites: "E.O.9066 (Truth Be Told)" and "Never Again! (Mo! Shimasen!)." The first is dedicated and based on Japanese Americans unjustly interned during World War II. There are elements of gagaku from the 11th century in one of its five sections, and traditional Chinese compositions, vanguard percussion, piano pyrotechnics (thanks to Glenn Horiuchi), and a swarm of tonal and timbral strategies tell a story with a wide array of percussion instruments. On "Never Again!," musical influences from West Africa and Japan offer a meditation on the victims of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Stringed instruments denoting Japanese folk songs and veritable choirs of drums ringing a life pulse against the force of silence are the work's trademarks. And there is a strangely beautiful non-resolvable quality to its end, after all of that investigation and mourning, that is fitting for such a meditation. Truly haunting, truly inspiring.

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