Church of Euthanasia

The One Commandment:
"Thou shalt not procreate"

The Four Pillars:
suicide · abortion
cannibalism · sodomy

Human Population:

Translate button

Chris Korda Shares Her Favorite Odd Time Songs

Odd time was the height of musical fashion in the late 1960s and early 1970s. I heard many of the songs below as a child, and developed a lifelong fascination with odd time as a result. These odd time influences predisposed me to discover complex polymeter and use it in my composing. They're listed in release order, which isn't always the order I encountered them in, but close enough.

Lalo Schifrin - Mission Impossible Theme (1966)
This iconic TV theme is probably the first odd time music I ever heard. Itís been covered a lot, but the original is still the best. Itís in 5/4.

The Beatles - Happiness Is A Warm Gun (1968)
My mother had a decent collection of rock records, including The Beatles ďWhite Album.Ē I remember thinking there was something odd about this song, but I only learned why much later. It alternates between 3/4, 4/4, and 5/4.

Jethro Tull - Living in the Past (1969)
This song was often on the radio, and very obviously in 5/4. Jethro Tullís ďLocomotive BreathĒ was the first song I ever learned on the guitar.

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice - Jesus Christ Superstar (1970)
This rock opera seethes with odd time. I had the Broadway cast version and I can still sing every song from memory. Itís in 3/4, 4/4, 5/4, and 7/4.

Yes - Starship Trooper (1971)
When Iím asked to name my influences, Yes still tops the list. This song features a mix of 3/4, 4/4, and 7/4.

Bob Weir - Playin' In The Band (1972)
I encountered this song a decade later, by which point I was already an odd time aficionado. I heard the Dead play it live many times, and its improvised middle section greatly influenced my rhythm guitar playing. The entire song is in 10/4, though the subdivision varies.

Pink Floyd - Money (1973)
This song was a staple of rock radio for two decades. Itís in 7/4 except for the solo section which reverts to 4/4.

Yes - Gates of Delirium (1974)
This is my favorite progressive rock song, and I often use it to demonstrate the decline of musical complexity since the 1970s. Parts of it are challenging to count, but itís primarily in 3/4, 4/4, and 11/4.

John Abercrombie Ė Timeless (1974)
My roommate at the Berklee College of Music played me this album, and I became a John Abercrombie disciple overnight. I often went to hear him play and transcribed some of his solos. This gorgeous song is in 14/4.

Jean-Luc Ponty - Aurora (Pt. I & II) (1976)
I bought the eponymous album as a teenager, and I still listen to it regularly. The solos are epic, the arrangements are slick, and Patrice Rushenís keyboard playing is delightful. Part one is in 5/4, and part two is in 7/4.

Grateful Dead - Estimated Prophet (1978)
This is a masterful use of 7/4, showing tremendous virtuosity and inventiveness. The feel changes subtly throughout.

Pat Metheny - Full Circle (1984)
I first encountered Pat Metheny at Berklee, where he was revered like a god. I studied his compositions and imitated his triadic warmth. This song is primarily in 11/4, with breaks in 3/4 and 4/4.

Chris Kordaís latest heady LP, the very timely and relevant ĎApologize to the Futureí, is now available on Perlon. Stream it in full below ó a Bandcamp exclusive ó along with a live set and some other selections from the Boston-based artistís idiosyncratic back catalogue of polymeter experiments and self-generated songwriting.

 top  email the Church of Euthanasia