In 1963 a New York Times critic argued that the Merce Cunningham Dance Company would be more successful without John Cage and his music. Village Voice dance critic Jill Johnston responded that this would be like “the Bible without God.”
Thirty years later, the American Composers Forum asked Cage to select a composer to provide music for one of Cunningham's performances in a Minneapolis gym. He died before making the decision and David Tudor stepped in to make the choice. Mark Applebaum, a long-haired college kid, was never the same again.
This two disc set brings together Applebaum's subsequent 2005 collaboration with the Merce Cunninghan Dance Company at Stanford University (The Bible without God) along with other music made since on his electroacoustic sound sculpture — amplified and processed junk hardware, springs, mousetraps and the like — aka, the Mouseketier. Indeterminacy rules in these pieces; stopwatches, chance procedures, and prepared pianos abound, but all is not as Cageian as it seems. It's a seductively dreamy world of floating sonorities and subtle pulses that may inspire you to move with extreme lines and clean geometries.
Blasphemy aside, The Bible Without God is a testament to being your own authority, living in the moment, and the beauty of everydayness. St. John would surely approve.