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By Daniel Chua

This e-book examines the highbrow heritage of instrumental tune, specifically the assumption of absolute tune. It attempts to teach how yes principles in philosophy, theology and the sciences have an effect on the that means and, certainly, the life of instrumental tune, and the way, in flip, instrumental tune is used to solve or exemplify definite difficulties in glossy tradition. rather than present in a natural and self sustaining shape, song is woven again into the epistemological cloth and entangled with a variety of discourses, hence demonstrating the centrality of tune within the development of which means.

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W# œ œ ˙ ˙ ˙w. ˙ ∑ ˙ ˙ w ˙ ˙ w ˙ ∑ œ œ b ww ww ˙ w˙ # ˙ ww ww ˙ w œ ˙w ˙ ww bW W w w ww #W W ˙w ˙ b ww ˙ w˙ ˙ # ww the first is the product of an instrumental knowledge, the second an emanation of substantive reason; equal temperament reduces music to a quantitative sameness, Pythagorean tuning structures the world with a qualitative difference. One is grounded in supernature, the other is the pragmatic result of empirical nature. Equal temperament and Pythagorean tuning therefore stand against each other as opposing structures of rationality.

Secondly, having demythologised music with an empirical rationality, he subjects it with an instrumental efficiency that re-tunes music for modern ears. 33 Indeed, the chromatic and enharmonic nature of modern music demanded it, and just to underline the point, Galilei composes ‘a song’ which if sung with perfect intonation would be out of tune with reality (see example 1): the chromatic and enharmonic clashes of modern harmony can only be eradicated if played on instruments tuned to equal temperament.

33 Indeed, the chromatic and enharmonic nature of modern music demanded it, and just to underline the point, Galilei composes ‘a song’ which if sung with perfect intonation would be out of tune with reality (see example 1): the chromatic and enharmonic clashes of modern harmony can only be eradicated if played on instruments tuned to equal temperament. ’34 In other words, imperfect music requires the imperfect tuning of an imperfect reality. An imperfect piece can no longer be absolute music. Indeed, instrumental music and absolute music are diametrically opposed at this juncture of modernity, for equally tempered music cannot connect with the cosmos as sounding numbers.

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