David First (1953) was a jazz guitarist who played with Cecil Taylor in 1973,
a punk-rocker in Philadelphia whose band Notekillers released the single
The Zipper (1980) at the peak of the no-wave movement,
an opera composer whose The Manhattan Book of the Dead premiered in 1996,
a synthesizer player and an avantgarde composer as documented on
Resolver, recorded between 1987 and 1991, and
The Good Book's Accurate Jail of Escape Dust Coordinates (1995),
and a synth-pop singer-songwriter on Universary (2002).
He found his mission in life when he started focusing on massive intricate
drones, notably the four of exact equal duration contained in
Dave's Waves - A Sonic Restaurant (premiered in 2002 - Ants, 2003).
Privacy Issues (XI, 2010) collects "droneworks" from 1996 to 2009:
the 36-minute hypercharged cosmic trip of Zen Guilt/Zen Blame (1996),
A Bet on Transcendence Favors the House (1998) for ebow guitar, that
stages one of the most dramatic evolutions,
My Veil Evades Detection; My Veil Defies Exhaustion; My Veil and I Divorce (2001) for clarinet, guitar, ebow guitar, piano and violin, a solemn fusion of "deep listening" and chamber music,
the dissonant and polyphonic The Softening Door (2003) for electronics, possibly the most disorienting and "psychedelic" piece,
the 31-minute "rhythmic" Aw (2003) for guitar and electronics, that wraps drones around a dripping-like metronome and then intones a frantic pulsation that becomes more and more anguished,
and the sophisticated 41-minute Pipeline Witness Apologies to Dennis (2008) for ebow guitar, computer, electronic keyboards, and two trombones,
The latter initially blends howls and hisses in a symphonic manner and then
sets in motion a descending scale of rumbles. Towards the end the trombones
and the keyboards begin to mumble melodic fragments in an almost tender manner.
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