One of those such masterworks, unearthed and posted to YouTube four years ago, has since become so legendarily saved that it’s not only finally receiving its due in commercial triumph, but it’s also revitalized the career of its creator in the process. If you don’t already know, that record is percussionist and composer Midori Takada‘s debut solo album, Through the Looking Glass, released originally in 1983.
In 20th and 21st century music there is a lot of imagination and experimentation, and strong interest in spirituality in general. But there isn’t much of this kind of intimate interweaving of specific sounds with concrete theological symbols. Composers like James MacMillan are exploring this sort of theology-based musical practice, as one writer describes his work, “giving the symbols and signs of Christianity their own flesh-and-blood physicality.” Others like Arvo Pärt use related methods in a broader sense. And surely there are other creative musicians working in this vein today.