Gordon: Gotham (Live)
Label: Cantaloupe Music
Michael Gordon's 2004 composition was first used as the score to a silent film, though this loud 'n' brawny orchestral evocation of New York City can hang as an audio-only experience. Each idea tends to be expressed quickly and cleanly, then slowly developed until a breaking point hits. In Part I, a circuitous piano motif runs atop slower-moving strings and woodwinds; the addition of electric guitar (in minute seven) heralds a dramatic shift. Part II features chugging tempos and alarm-style drone, while the finale juggles antic counterpoint and polyrhythms (like your average metropolis).