Constellation Thu April 13, 2017 8:00 pm
Bing & Ruth
In 2006, David Moore started BING & RUTH as a way to bring his compositions to an audience beyond academia. A pianist from Kansas, studying at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York’s Greenwich Village, Moore was writing the sort of music he wanted to hear: minimalist ensemble music with a certain filmic sensitivity, one that prioritized grace and texture over the style’s once-radical subtraction.
Following the seasoned history of minimalist heroes at the New School like JOHN CAGE and STEVE REICH—both of whom taught at the institution throughout the 1950s and ‘60s—Moore’s compositions looked past the studied repetition of the style’s most prominent forerunners towards a form built on feeling, a mobilization of time-honoured shapes, now angled outward towards a greater totalizing sublime. After a short hiatus, spent focused on other projects, Moore returned to BING & RUTH in 2010 with CITY LAKE. The ensemble had grown to eleven members, making touring and rehearsals increasingly difficult to coordinate, especially given the current landscape of classical music, which can make finding patronage outside of a few prodigious, metropolitan institutions a task that often seems insurmountable. Instead he sold self-released vinyl from his basement and at their shows around New York. As Moore continued, despite constant setbacks and frustrations, in his early sketches of new material, it seemed that the project would soon fade into obscurity. Around this time, Moore was put in touch with the experimental label RVNG INTL. and the pair worked together on two full-length LPs over the coming years.
Of these albums, 2014’s Tomorrow Was the Golden Age parsed the group’s eleven members to a seven-person ensemble that distilled minimalism’s most emotive moments down to artful melodies with a heavy, heartbreaking affect. The album brought the band a newfound acclaim as it made waves around the underground community, reviving interest in the meditative pop traditions of Philip Glass and Harold Budd, stretching so-called “classical” music to new limits, and proving that there was in fact a committed audience for this sort of thoughtful contemporary composition. The album was even named “one of the finest leftfield releases of the year" by Pitchfork and earned similar praise from The Quietus and Resident Advisor.
Now almost two years later, No Home of the Mind finds Moore returning to the piano a heavier, more driven feeling. Composed on seventeen pianos across North America and Europe over numerous sessions, tours, and travel, the pieces channel the idiosyncrasies and respective limitations of each instrument into inspiration.