To you, Boulez's 6th notation may sound like a slurry of notes. To me, it actually kind of does. Despite the fact that the left hand is playing exactly what the right hand does, just two notes displaced (and from the middle, playing a mirrored version), it still sounds like chaos. How is that something written down on paper has so much order, but sounds absolutely nothing like order?
While we ponder this question, it's good to have some images in mind. When I was practicing this, it felt like v
‘Doux, improvisé’ is the heading of the 5th Notation. Sweet and improvisatory. How do you play something that is written down precisely in a way that is improvisatory? The sweetness of this movement comes from the note suspended in time. There are two phrases, both beginning with a upward cascade of notes until only a lone melody floats on it. The melody goes up and then down and is interrupted by a sudden note. Our sound bubble has been popped.
We could start by asking the question, what are we actually hearing? This question is more relevant than you think. Boulez draws inspiration from many sources. He admits to being influenced by Ravel, Stravinsky and Bartok for this set of piano pieces.
Listen to this music and think about what it reminds you about. For some reason, when ever I hear this, my mind subconsciously adds a layer of swinging jazz rides and brushed snare to the music. What does it make you feel?