Max Richter: Dream 13 (minus even)

Dream 13 (minus even) is part of Max Richter’s latest album From Sleep. It aims to aid people establish a much more peaceful sleeping routine, and also a more peaceful thinking regime in the daytime.  This way of thinking has intrigued Richter throughout his career, with questions like ‘How can music and the human mind connect through the cyclical ritual that is sleep?’ being at the forefront of conversation. The album has rightly been described as:

“A metaphorical pause button, where the act of sleeping remains both a creative state and a refuge from the hustle and bustle of modern living.”

 

The Music

Scored for cello, piano and synths, Dream 13 (minus even) creates a humbling harmonic landscape that evokes nostalgia and (hopefully) happy memories. The subtle asymmetrical rhythms create a tranquil atmosphere, as the cello comes in and out of the melodic spotlight. Due to the purpose of this work within this concept album, there is very little variation, which actually creates a haunting aspect to the music. The continuity of this piece is what will aid sleeping habits. The cello part represents sighs of relief, or maybe even drawing breath when asleep. The grow in dynamic and tone when the instrument enters creates a more relaxing element to the piece, as the piano is playing so rigidly in time.

This peaceful work is ethereal, static and disciplined, and aims to bridge this metaphorical gap between mind and music whilst sleeping. The album as a whole is pretty incredible, and is well worth a listen to (day or night!).

Happy Reading!

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