Surly Bonds (2009)
for Drum Set
Jonathan Hess, drum set
Duration: 3.5 min.
Dedication: for Peter Jarvis
Commission: Commissioned by Peter Jarvis and Calabrese Brothers Music, LLC
Publisher: Musik Fabrik
Performance materials available from the publisher.
Surly Bonds (2009) for drum set was commissioned by Calabrese Brothers Music, LLC and was written for and dedicated to percussionist Peter Jarvis. The principal underlying rhythm of the work is a somewhat martial ostinato presented quietly on the snare drum. This unchanging rhythm provides a grid against which other colors and rhythms attempt to break the “surly bonds” and assert their own rhythmic identity. After a first unsuccessful attempt to overwhelm, the voices try again—succeeding this time in achieving release in a free, cadenza-like passage. However, the ostinato returns again until the work ends with the almost “desperate” silence between the sounds of bass and snare drums.