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Wind Band & Beyond – Fanfare for a New Era

Review by Vince Corozine

Label: Mark Records
Title: Fanfare for a new Era 2
Composer: Jack Stamp
Publisher: Kjos
Performer: US Air Force Band
Conductor: Col Lowell E. Graham

The composition begins with bold, full-sounding brass, as the trumpets produce an interesting musical effect over sustained notes in the basses. Unison horns play a moving line that fits perfectly with the timbre surrounding it.

In a total change of mood, the woodwinds enter playing a softer, more delicate contrasting theme. They sing out a dialogue of intricate, weaving musical lines, that begins an effective four-part imitation section. This section is very complex and needs to be carefully balanced. The brasses reenter at a forte level with lots of percussion and unison horns interjected. A pyramid containing perfect fourth intervals in the brass, leads us back to the main theme, which is somewhat developed. Dissonant brass chords ensue leading to another pyramid.

A high moving repetitious ostinato, in the woodwinds establishes an effective background for the low brass lines that are written beneath. Trumpets and horns are added creating a thrilling rhythmic build up in tension and dissonance.

A big maestosoending follows.

This dramatic piece creates an intense, rhythmic, driving, angular sound that is quite contemporary. The rich and resonant brass and the crisp and exact percussion dominate the scene throughout, as the main theme is somewhat developed.

This composition would make a good concert opener.

Recommended for: High School or College Bands