Ensemble Signal Plays Jonny Greenwood For ‘Tiny Desk Concert’

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Ensemble Signal performed two works composed by Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood for NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert series. The Brooklyn-based group performed “Three Miniatures From Water” and “88 (No. 1).”

Greenwood wrote an essay to accompany Ensemble’s Singal’s Tiny Desk Concert (which he did not attend). The composer revealed “Three Miniatures From Water,” was initially written in preparation for a 2014 Australian Chamber Orchestra commission. It was inspired by the Philip Larkin poem Water. Greenwood also wrote about “88 (No. 1),” describing it as inspired by composer Olivier Messiaen’s use of the octatonic mode.

“The performer has to put fingerless gloves on halfway through,” Greenwood said of the latter piece, “partly in tribute to the immortal Glenn Gould, and partly because the technique requires some painful hammering.”

Watch the Ensemble Signal’s Tiny Desk performance below:

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