Gavin Gamboa

Transmogrificantus Octet

(Teaching Machine)

Release date: Jul 29, 2014

Transmogrificantus Octet, existing in both the realms of American Minimalism and Romantic-era composition, is a two-movement string octet in memory of jazz pianist Austin Peralta. Beginning with a movement built upon driving and relentless refrains and episodes, it transitions into an introspective, soaring slow movement, one which embraces the classical style which Peralta knew well, and which he had a deferential love for.

As composer Gavin Gamboa explains, "I felt that this piece should unfurl in states of gradual as well as sudden transformation, bringing into focus the chaos and tranquility associated with loss. In attempting to express something which was consistent yet evolving, something which tries to inhabit both of these contradictory states simultaneously, I hoped to arrive at the musical equivalent of identity, as it too is something which remains fixed yet undergoes continuous change."

The work's title is a suggestion of this, as it combines both "to transform" and "cantus", as in the cantus firmus of early polyphonic music such as Gregorian Chant. Hence the solemn connotations of "cantus" (which represent the foundational and interior) become unified with the turbulent frenzies of transformation and transcendence. Mastered by PARMA, a classical recording studio based in New Hampshire.

Track Listing

  1. 1. Sinfonia