Slapback for electric guitar and delay unit (1997)

Duration c. 12 minutes Comissioned by American Composers Forum Premiered by Seth Josel at Ultraschall Festival, Berlin, January 21, 2000

Recording available on “The Stroke That Kills” by Seth Josel, New World Records (

Program Notes

Slapback takes its cue from two recordings of Pete Townshend’s guitar work with The Who: a two-chord riff taken from the end of “Can You See The Real Me” from Quadrophenia, and an extended jam on “My Generation” on Live at Leeds, described in the liner notes as “some excellent soloing by Pete who appears to play against his own echo bouncing off the back of the hall.” In Slapback Townshend’s artifacts are treated as a motorcycle pilfered by an amateur thief: chopped up, repainted, then put back on the streets with just enough resemblance to invite suspicion from law enforcement – all at a suitably high decibel level.

Slapback was was underwritten by the American Composers Forum with funds provided by the Jerome Foundation. 


“…raw and muscular. […] builds, grows and evolves in extremely satisfying ways.” – Sequenza 21