Although I had a busy day yesterday there were a couple of patches where I was needed to be present for work but not actively involved. I used those gaps in the day to continue sketching the new choral work.
The text is a first draft at the moment, so in a slight state of flux, but I have already homed in on the piece’s sound. For this particular recipe I am using a synthetic scale, secundal harmony and fifth-based primary chords.
While that may all sound quite complicated, it effectively boils down to my using a tonal rather than atonal approach, even if the scale and the chord construction is a little unusual. As should always be the case in music with text, these choices have been made in response to the words rather than being imposed upon them.
Although the sound of the language might therefore be slightly unusual, the grammar underpinning it runs according to the accepted guidelines, meaning that elements such as modulations adhere to the textbook definitions. It is the nature of the mode and the chords that help to make the music sound different.
This approach, a careful balance of technique and inspiration, is quite slow going at the start, but I want to get it absolutely right, not just because I am curious to hear the results, but also because I need to continue to acquire these skills. If the end product allows people to appreciate the grace of the lake-swimmer rather than the furious pedalling of the legs beneath the surface then I think it will have worked out well.