Twelve-tone elements and operations can be identified throughout all composed and improvised examples discussed. But rather than following “rigid” serial rules dictating strictly defined operations with twelve-tone sets, derived rows, and segments from the row, the actual examples display combinations of selective operations with a pre-given or implied tonal context. Although it is impossible to “prove”, I consider these practices as examples of how Schat imagined his Tone Clock as a way to bridge the twelve-tone techniques of atonal music with the more intuitive and context-driven practice of tonal music. Likewise the examples seem to illustrate how the trichords from the Tone Clock hours seem to support Wuorinen’s ideas of small segments serving as quickly perceptible content groups rather than as rigidly ordered interval successions (see subchapter 4.1).
In all examples both composers and improvisers apply the twelve-tone techniques transposition, inversion and retro-gradation of pitches, trichords, and combinations of trichords, with the emphasis on those from the Tone Clock hour at stake. Trichord analysis identified the dominating presence of trichords 2+3 (Hoogstins), 1+2 (Carlberg), and 1+5 (O’Gallagher). Of these trichords those containing a minor second interval worked better to create non-tonal sounds than trichords 2+2, 2+3, 2+4, 3+3, and 3+4 marking passages with a more diatonic character.
In the context of the above-mentioned blending of twelve-tone with tonal techniques, all soloists were obviously challenged to connect the assigned trichord operations to their informed intuitive habits of embellishing pentatonic scales (Hoogstins), applying non-tonal superimpositions (de Graaf, O’Gallagher), or creating high-density chromatic textures (O’Gallagher). No matter what inconvenience this challenge may have created for the performing musicians, it seems to have helped them all to create meaningful solos.
Expectedly, most applications of twelve-tone techniques were found in the composed parts. In the solos, the fragments where twelve-tone techniques are intentionally played are relatively short. As to O’Gallagher’s soloing I find this disappointing and in contrast to his well-structured method on twelve-tone improvisation discussed in subchapter 3.7. In his method he favors a comprehensive approach of trichords and trichord combinations to both non-tonal and tonal musical, but in his otherwise impressive solos, this approach is not as obviously present as I had expected. On the other hand, the trichord successions in his improvisations are often related to implied tonalities. Therewith he demonstrates their qualities as non-tonal superimpositions on tonal harmonies.
To find out if separate applications of all distinct hours of the Tone Clock would lead to a better understanding of their potential musical space, I undertook the composing and playing of Carillon, which will be discussed in the next subchapter. My aims were to concentrate on operations with all basic tone rows by creating both horizontal and vertical successions of their trichords and trichord combinations. I also wrote suggestions for improvisations, to help performers making meaningful connections with the composed material. In the next sub chapter I will discuss three movements of Carillon. Chapter 6 contains the complete recording of this composition for saxophone quartet.