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The Wild Bull - Morton Subotnick

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    The Wild Bull is the second composition for tape was commissioned by Nonesuch Records. The album was composed on the Buchla 100 modular electronic music system originally built for Morton Subotnick by Donald Buchla at the San Francisco Tape Music Center.

    The album was inspired by a Sumerian poem from which the album takes it title. Following the highly acclaimed "Silver Apples of the Moon", this album has a more developed sound. One can hear more thoughout passages and closer attention to timbre development over time as opposed to a constant demonstration of gymnastics more prevalent on the former work, as Subotnick describes:

    The first side of this record was almost complete when I came across "The Wild Bull", I was very impressed by the poem and quickly began to feel an affinity between the poem and the composition I was working on -- in fact, the first three notes of the work seemed to me a kind of human/wild-bull moan--and later I added a human breathing sound to one of the notes.

    There was never an attempt to 'portray' the poem (I don't think music is about that), but at the same time it became harder and harder to disassociate myself from the pathos and restrained cry of personal loss which spoke to me from such a distant point in time. The state of mind which the poem evoked became intimately tangled with the state of mind my own composition was evoking in me. To title the work after the poem seemed natural and to offer the poem seems equally natural.

    THE WILD BULL

    The wild bull, who has lain down, lives no more
    the wild bull, who has lain down, lives no more,
    Dumuzi, the wild bull, who has lain down, lives no more,
    the wild bull, who has lain down, lives no more.

    O you wild bull, how fast you sleep!
    How fast sleep ewe and lamb!
    O you wild bull, how fast you sleep!
    How fast sleep goat and kid!

    I will ask the hills and the valleys,
    I will ask the hills of the Bison:
    "Where is the young man, my husband?"
    I will say,
    "He whom I no longer serve food"
    I will say,
    "He whom I no longer give to drink"
    I will say,
    "And my lovely maids"
    I will say,
    "And my lovely young men?"

    "The Bison has taken thy husband away,
    up into the mountains!"

    "The Bison has taken thy young man away,
    up into the mountains!"

    "Bison of the mountains, with the mottled eyes!
    Bison of the mountains, with the crushing teeth!
    Bison!-He sleeps sweetly, he sleeps sweetly,
    He whom I no longer serve sleeps sweetly,
    He whom I no longer give to drink sleeps sweetly,
    My lovely maids sleep sweetly,
    My lovely young men sleep sweetly!"

    "My young man who perished from me
    (at the hands of) your men,
    My young Ababa who perished from me
    (at the hands of) your men,
    Will never more calm me (with) his loving glance
    Will never more unfasten his lovely bright clasp
    (at night)
    On his couch you made the jackals lie down,
    In my husband's fold you made the raven dwell,
    His reed pipe-the wind plays it,
    My husband's songs-the north wind sings them."
    Track Listings:
    Side A
    The Wild Bull (Part I) 13:00

    Side B
    The Wild Bull (Part II) 14:50
    Total Time: 27:50
    Artist Name(s):
    Morton Subotnick - Buchla 100
    Producer(s):
    Morton Subotnick
    Year:
    1968
    Album Type:
    Studio
    Formats:
    Compact Disc, Digital / Download, LP 33 1/3
    Cover & Packge Design:
    Elaine Gongora, Art: Bob Pepper
    Liscense:
    Copyright
    Label / Publishing
    Label Name:
    Nonesuch
    Catalog Number(s):
    H-71208
    Location:
    New York City, NY USA
    Editions / Reissues
    1. 1968 - LP - Nonesuch H-71208 - USA, UK, Canada
    2. 1994 - CD - wergo WER 2035-2, 282 035-2 - Germany
    3. 2014 - LP, Digital - Karlrecords KR018 - Germany
    Synthesizers Used
    Album Locator
    [+] Amazon
    [+] Amoeba
    [+] Discogs
    [+] Ebay
    [+] Google
    [+] YouTube


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