“Other highlights included Douglas Knehans's ‘Bang’...Knehans uses electronics and a driving rhythm to explore variations in time and attack. However, there are [sic] a directness of expression and lack of pretension which resonate with his compatriots' music.”
— The Sydney Morning Herald (Jun 03, 2003)
bang was written in response to a commission from the Australian new music performers The Seymour Group.
At the time I was experimenting with combinations of interactive electronics and live musicians. One of the key technical tools in this environment is MAX software for the creation of interactive environments. One of the fundamental messages used in this software is a signal called BANG. As the tutorial on this software object states: “Bang means do it” and as such is a universal trigger for any number of events.
With this in mind, I set up a composition framework where all performers were to be equipped with their own MIDI pedals for the triggering of a range of events. Though this was an exciting idea, it seemed to me that adding such logistics on top of an already difficult score to perform may have been putting too much pressure on scarce rehearsal time. It was at that point that I reconceived the work for ensemble and pre-recorded electronics, but retaining the title bang.
The work was written for and dedicated to Mark Summerbell and The Seymour Group.