12 ottobre 2012

Ha da poco chiuso i battenti per ragioni economiche una delle migliori e più affidabili etichette dedicate alla diffusione di musiche d'avanguardia, la californiana New Albion Records. Il catalogo - con importanti opere di John Cage, Pauline Oliveros, John Adams, Cornelius Cardew, Morton Subotnick, Terry Riley, Alvin Curran, Morton Feldman e Lou Harrison - rimarrà disponibile soltanto in formato digitale, senza più ristampe in cd né nuove pubblicazioni.

For nearly a quarter of a century, devotees of a particular strain of contemporary music - experimental, contemplative, drawing on the traditions of John Cage and American minimalism - have counted on the small Bay Area record label New Albion to supply their needs. Under the visionary, willful leadership of founder Foster Reed, the company found a small but distinctive niche in the new music market and made a number of recordings that live on as indispensable documents. There was just one catch: the money. It wasn't there. Last month, Reed, 61, finally decided to pull the plug on his operation. Visitors to the company's website now encounter a mournful black background with a personal note from Reed, directing customers to a website where the company's stock is still available for digital downloads. But the physical CDs are going back to the artists, and there won't be any new records in the pipeline.