The Chord Catalogue
all the 8178 chords possible in one octave
"[A] transcendental experience....Johnson is the only pianist who can make his way through the dizzying multiplicity of colors present in the equal-tempered scale. Resonances in the space, and excitations in the ears, caused sheer psychedelic perceptions, that well surpassed the simple combinations game."
Excerpts from the liner notes by Tom Johnson:
"Extreme and, one would think, extremely simple. A lesser man would have arranged those 8178 chords in some symphonically meaningful, or else quasi-random order, but Johnson proceeded methodically up the chromatic scale from two notes at a time, three, four, so on to 13....By the time we reached 10-note chords, the information overload was such that differences were hardly perceptible, a situation reminiscent of serial music. Far from being heavy-handed minimalism, The Chord Catalogue was a pointed lesson in music history and the relativity of perception."
Tom Johnson composed The Chord Catalogue in 1986 and has performed it numerous times around the world since then. This is the first recording. The score consists of a set of verbal instructions and is included in the CD booklet.