Review of My Wounded Head 3!

From American Record Guide:

Marc Chan’s My Wounded Head 3, performed marvelously by the American Record Guide’s own Rob Haskins, is a gorgeous and confounding musical carousel. A few hundred measures and 73 minutes long, the piece progresses slowly and incrementally through polyrhythmic combinations of simple, repeating melodic figures. These combinations yield an ever-changing web of tones that can change gradually or suddenly, depending on which musical voice is added or delicately removed from the sonic web. These shifts are seldom predictable and often alter or cloud the meter, keeping the listener off balance, struggling in vain to find solid ground. Chan deals in familiar affects through familiar means, though everything is always a bit skewed. Some sonorities are eerie while others are sunny. There are stretches of cool, murmuring depth, and there are moments of sudden brightness. A serene beginning is unsettled by a more anxious middle, and the piece ends on an upswing through a bold, drawn-out cadence. The single revolution of this musical mobile moves through melancholy and optimism, ending with peaceful acceptance. Its sheer length and general surface consistency demand reflection and meditation on the sounds and on the personal imperfection and damage suggested by the work’s title. Chan’s piece is among the most brilliant in recent memory.

– American Record Guide (March/April 2017)