Wind Ensemble

Grade 3:

This Cruel Moon

Lightning Field

Foundry

Sheltering Sky

 

Grade 4 / 4+:

Clocking

Hymn to a Blue Hour

Night on Fire

Ringmaster's March

Strange Humors

Undertow

Unquiet Spirits

Xerxes

 

Grade 5 / 5+:

Asphalt Cocktail

Aurora Awakes

The Frozen Cathedral

Fanfare for
       Full Fathom Five

High Wire

Kingfishers Catch Fire

Liminal

The Night Garden

Redacted

Redline Tango

Sasparilla

Songs from the
       End of the World

The Soul Has
  
   Many Motions

Turbine

Turning

Wine-Dark Sea:
     Symphony for Band

 

Concertos:

Antique Violences:
     Trumpet Concerto

Drum Music: Perc. Cto

Harvest: Tbn. Cto.

Sop. Sax Concerto

 

Chamber Music

Vocal Music

Orchestra

Music for Theater

Works in Progress

 

Undertow (2008)

Audio & Score

for concert band
duration: 5'

Grade 3+ / Texas PML Grade 4

Click to buy : Full set $135. Extra 9x12 score $20.

Commissioned by the Hill Country Middle School Band, Cheryl Floyd and Charles Fischer, conductors.
World premiere on May 13, 2008, Bates Recital Hall at the University of Texas at Austin, conducted by Cheryl Floyd.

Though many of his pieces are extremely virtuosic, Undertow is the first of Mackey's works written specifically for intermediate band. It was commissioned by the Hill Country Middle School Band and premiered by that ensemble with its conductor, Cheryl Floyd, in May 2008. The work is significantly different than much of Mackey's output in terms of technical difficulty, but many characteristic elements of his writing are nonetheless present, including biting semitone dissonance within a tonal context, frequent use of mixed meter, heavy percussion effects and, perhaps most importantly to this work, a pervasive ostinato. The metric pattern for the piece is an alternation of 7/8 and 4/4 time, which provides an agitated "out-of-step" pulsation throughout. The energetic opening melody cycles through several repetitions before washing away into a gentle stream of percussive eighth notes. From here, a countermelody emerges that slowly ratchets the energy back up to its original level, where the initial melody returns to round out the explosive conclusion.

Program note by Jake Wallace
Please credit Jake Wallace when reproducing or excerpting this program note