Temporal Juxtapositions with Francesco Tristano

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Pianist Francesco Tristano has always straddled the worlds of the classic and the progressive. His 12 releases range from albums of music by Bach and Berio to transcriptions of electronic music for acoustic piano. His 2011 release "bachCage" alternated works of the two radically different masters while his latest release "idiosynkrasia" pairs acoustic piano with electronic manipulations.

In this week's episode of Mixtapes, Tristano assembles an hour of music from Desprez to Alvin Curran that charts his eclectic musical trajectory. Below find an annotated playlist from Tristano himself.


  • Josquin Desprez: Missa Pange lingua. Kyrie
    The beginning, the foundation: purity of modality before complications of tonality...
  • Alvin Curran: Hope Street Tunnel Blues (Bruce Brubaker, piano)
    Minimalism to the max! one of the most virtuoso performances of contemporary piano music by one of the great minds of our era.
  • Claude DebussyLa cathedrale engloutie (from Preludes, Book I) (version by Tomita, analog synthesizers)
    Transliteration: there is no absolute meaning in music - a score travels in time and space. This version is of sublime beauty.
  • Brandt Brauer Frick: Bop (from the album "You make me real")
    The hit track from one of Europe's most prominent avant-garde electronic music bands - a blend of electronic and acoustic, tweaked both ways!
  • Sutekh: The last hour (from the album "On Bach")
    An organ / a vision / a hallucination : this is US producer Seth Horvitz's (aka Sutekh) soundtrack to JSB - a must-have album by all means.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach: St. Matthew Passion. Part 1,1 Chor mit Choral. (Bach Collegium Japan/Masaaki Suzuki)
  • Louis Couperin: Pavane en fa dieze mineur (Christophe Rousset, cembalo)
    Music in the old realm: every aspect seems to be so different: the rhythm, the intonation. I find this interpretation very powerful and emotional.
  • Rami Khalife & Francesco Tristano: Jeita