4 And More Music

Bryars: The Sinking of the Titanic

Bryars, Gavin

Sinking of the Titanic, The

Gavin Bryars Ensemble / Jeck, Philip / Allen, Martin

GB Records
5052442004905 | BCGBCD 21 | 1CD
This live version of Gavin Bryars’ seminal work The Sinking of the Titanic is regarded by the composer as “the definitive performance”, made with his ideal choice of musicians. It was recorded on the Gavin Bryars Ensemble’s tour in 2012, the centenary year of the disaster.
It brings together in one performance elements that have appeared separately in the various versions that precede it: the inclusion of the improvising turntablist Philip Jeck; the presence of a second quartet of low strings that consists of his four children; the faint allusion to Aphex Twin’s remix The Raising of the Titanic made shortly after the release of the 1994 recording; the water gong first used by percussionist Martin Allen towards the end of a performance on a raft at the shallow end of a renovated Art Nouveau swimming pool in Brussels...
Although there have been four previous recordings of The Sinking of the Titanic (and the original recording on Brian Eno’s Obscure label from 1975 is scheduled for re-release on GB Records), according to the composer this performance and recording is as near to a definitive one as there is ever likely to be.