Microtonal Music for Lyre (Etude in the Archytas Enharmonic Genus)

by Michael Levy

Released 2016
Released 2016
Study for replica ancient Greek chelys (tortoise shell form) lyre in the intense microtonal ancient Greek Archytas Enharmonic Genus...
NOTES
A study for solo lyre based on a hauntingly evocative documented microtonal scale from ancient Greece, known as the "Archytas Enharmonic Genus" scale:

http://www.ex-tempore.org/ARCHYTAS/ARCHYTAS.html

The use of quarter tones in this ancient Greek scale adds an intensity to the resulting music improvised in it in an entirely different dimension to the artificial constraints of our monotonously standardised 12 note chromatic system.

The lyre I am playing is a replica ancient Greek chelys (tortoise shell form of lyre) - the "Lyre of Apollo III", hand-made in modern Greece by Luthieros:

http://en.luthieros.com/product/the-lyre-of-apollo-iii-ancient-greek-lyre-chelys-11-strings-top-quality-handcrafted-musical-instrument

The feeling of intensity in this microtonal scale is further enhanced by the authentic use of the clearly focused intervals, tuned here just intonation.

In this improvisation, I also experiment with the rhythmic potential of the reconstructed tortoise shell form lyre, by also beating rhythm on the skin soundboard with the greater mass of my replica ancient Greek carved bone plectrum; in much the same manner that acoustic guitarists today can beat rhythm on the soundboard of their guitars whilst they play - I sincerely hope that Apollo would approve of my effects to bring both his lyre and his long-forgotten ancient Greek scales new life!

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