Press Quotes


“An American maverick.”
–Philip Glass

“Say it plainly — Michael Harrison's ‘Revelation: Music in Pure Intonation’  is probably the most brilliant and original extended composition for solo piano since the early works of Frederic Rzewski three decades ago (and no, I am not forgetting Elliott Carter).
–Tim Page, Spoleto Overview Critic

“…a new harmonic world began to assert itself…”
–Paul Griffiths, The New York Times    

Revelation is a caressing, cataclysmic, monumentally over-the-top ode…a sonic bomb…you might think all the bells of the Vatican have entered your skull…by the hallucinatory end, it’s all stars and rainbows.”
–Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times

Revelation should prove to be one of the most influential piano compositions of the 21st century.”
–Frank J. Oteri, editor of American Music Center’s

“What is the next big thing?  Michael Harrison’s 90-minute ‘Revelation’ is that sort of revolutionary work…”
–Stuart Isacoff, The New York Sun

“…you play the vividly specific, spine-chilling intervals on [Harrison’s] ‘just’ piano, and then everything sounds so bland and washed-out and arbitrary and disappointing on the conventionally tuned one.”
–Kyle Gann, The Village Voice

“…phantom overtones and resonances seemed to hover around him.”
–Jon Pareles, The New York Times

“Harrison is bound to profoundly influence the musicians of his generation.”
–Terry Riley

“Harrison will bring the beauty of just intonation to all lands.”
–La Monte Young

Revelation is a 90-minute marathon for solo piano employing an otherworldly vocabulary of sounds and effects.”
–Brian Wise, The New York Times  

“The intelligent discrimination with which he approaches his work is something that I have heard only in a tiny handful of classical recordings starting with Glenn Gould.” 
–Stephen Hill, National Public Radio

Revelation is one of the first great musical pieces of the 21st century.”
–Joseph Shaw, The Southampton Press

Revelation belongs among the exhaustive modern masterpieces for solo piano, resting securely at the same level as Hindemith’s Ludus Tonalis, Shostakovich’s Preludes and Fugues, Cage’s Sonatas & Interludes, Duckworth’s Time Curve Preludes, and La Monte Young’s The Well-Tuned Piano.”
–Richard Kostelanetz, writer, artist & critic

“…the kind of finely shaded spectrum we might achieve in the third millennium.”
–Kyle Gann, The Village Voice  

“A pulsating, shimmering wall of sound in which all kinds of ghost-like sound effects and structures appear.  A formidable pianist, Harrison…has a fascination with reconciling form and improvisation through raga-like structures, which beckon towards an unexplored universe of sound relationships.”
–Marcus Boon, The Wire

“With the tones stirred on the scale, totally different colors glowed red-hot…the crashing of a gong, bells, the plucking of a harp or sitar, the sound of a horn—the resonance nearly reaches one’s abdomen.”
–Von Elisabeth Elling, Westfalisher Anzeiger (Germany)

 “An inventive composer whose works contain echoes of contemporary and Oriental music all in the service of an engaging melodic gift.”
–John Schaefer, New Sounds, WNYC, New York
“An old-guard pioneer of experimental piano writing.”
The New Yorker

 “Often it sounds as if there is a whole orchestra of acoustic and electronic instruments accompanying the piano.  Literal waves of sound wash over the audience…and after sitting through 90 minutes of this tuning, regular pianos seem colorless.”
–Amanda MacBlane, New York Press

“Glorious clouds of harmonics, …divine thunder, angel choirs, celestial bells.”
–Sandy McCroskey, The Nation

 “Harrison gives the piano a versatility of sound never heard before, ranging from harp to guitar to sitar.”
–Annie Bergen, WQXR, New York

“If the walls of an ancient European cathedral of Middle Eastern monastery could sing, this is what you’d hear.”
–C.W. Vrtacek, Advocate

“In each age, composers have transformed the piano according to their needs; and Harrison’s is the next great step in that development.”
–Stuart Isacoff, editor, Piano Today

“An indisputable landmark in Western tuning’s circuitous history.”
–Kyle Gann, The Village Voice

“Harrison has perfected a way of playing in just intonation at the piano…such celestial resonance that it captures your attention from the first note.”
–Linda Kohanov, contributing editor, CD Review

 “The best of both worlds:  the delectable just-tuned piano sound with the ability of harmonic motion found in traditional classical works.”
–Bob Reina, Stereophile’s “RECORDS 2 DIE 4”

“The tuning system and modified strings transform the piano’s sound, creating a strangely ‘Eastern” timbre, with sustained overtones.”
–Jon Andrews, Downbeat

 “It is mesmerizing!  The tuning is certainly a revelation.”
–Seymour Bernstein, pianist/author

“Revelation is a visionary development in the history of temperament.”
–Kirk Nurock, composer/pianist  

“The science of music has taken a significant step forward.”
–Deedee Finney, New York Post

“A devoted and developing artist in an age of empty virtuosity and show bizness-as-usual.”
–Ed Strickland, Fanfare