USA, 1987, post-minimalism / minimalism

Meredith MonkDo You Be: Unlike Monk’s operas and extended vocal work both alone and with others, this album is everything Monk can do with her voice in bite-sized, comprehensible chunks. Yes, mixing metaphors is appropriate when writing of Monk’s music, because it’s food for the brain. The first half of this album is positively skeletal, and it’s not until “Memory Song” that we hear a voice other than Monk’s and an instrument other than a synthesizer. Some fleshing out follows with percussion, as well. Put simply: Monk’s voice is an avant-garde treasure of trills, titters, and stutters, her compositions nuanced, layered, and beautifully-evocative.

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