top of page
Four Experiments stemmed from a pandemic fascination with an early book of poetry by Stephen Spender and a desire to explore new ways of viewing my relationship to instrumental, compositional, and improvisatory technique. Each piece here was written to be played by any number of players with any level of background, and they are presented here in solo versions and in small ensembles. Beyond the musical challenges posed through manic repetition, instrumental discomfort, the frailty of the untrained voice, and working in uncomfortable time frames, these pieces also present personal and social challenges to be overcome in preparation for their performance. It was only natural to base the set's ensemble on the group of musicians loosely referred to as Mutual Aid Music. These performers combine their mastery with a fearlessness that is necessary in attacking each Experiment. Failure is a possible form of virtuosity, and the stunningly intimate and raw music made by these musicians, using the odd constructions of the Experiments as their guide, is proof that this kind of mastery can be overwhelmingly moving.


released September 26, 2023

Disc One
Experiment One
“Bray Trumpets,
Blow forever in my head!”

1. John McCowen recorder (27:01)
Recorded in Reykjavik, Iceland April 24, 2022
2. Weston Olencki trombone (31:51)
Nate Wooley trombone
Recorded at Oktaven Studios, Mt. Vernon, NY July 28, 2022

Disc Two
Experiment Two
“The voices of the poor, like birds
That thud against a sullen pain,”

1. Ryan Packard bass drum, sine tones, speaker cone, and rope (18:21)
Recorded in Stockholm, Sweden May 11, 2022
2. gabby fluke-mogul violin (20:35)
Russell Greenberg percussion
Cory Smythe piano
Lester St. Louis cello
Luke Stewart double bass and amplifier

Disc Three
Experiment Three
“Touched lips and quiver, as though these worn things…”

1. Nate Wooley voice (22:54)
Recorded in Brooklyn, NY April 24, 2022
2. Joshua Modney violin and voice (6:48)
Mariel Roberts cello and voice
3. Joshua Modney violin and voice (8:39)
Mariel Roberts cello and voice
4. Joshua Modney violin and voice (8:00)
Mariel Roberts cello and voice
Recorded at Oktaven Studio, Mt. Vernon, NY October 4, 2022

Disc Four
Experiment Four
“I am dizzy looking at their faces;”

1. Seymour Wright alto saxophone (33:15)
Recorded in London, England February 22, 2022
2. Laura Cocks – flute (34:52)
Madison Greenstone – clarinet
Eric Wubbels – piano, voice, autoharp
Recorded at Oktaven Studio, Mt. Vernon, NY June 28, 2022

Design and Layout by Lasse Marhaug
All pieces by Nate Wooley (2021 fourwordseamusic, BMI)

Four Experiments 4 CD Boxset

    bottom of page