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A Lacuna In Slonimsky's Thesaurus

In Thesaurus of Scales and Melodic Patterns, Nicolas Slonimsky gives a table of twenty-one "divisions of the twelve notes into four mutually exclusive triads." [pp. !!-"# In Music Since 1900 ( th ed!"$ he states% "these findings were first published in &'! ... and have been since verified by a digital computer without finding any new solutions." [p. ''(# )his note supplies a missing classification and asserts that there are no others. Numbering the combinations published in Thesaurus of Scales and Melodic Patterns from one through twenty-one$ one can easily verify that *$ +$ and ' are transpositions of , - is a transposition of ., "$ &$ and ( are transpositions of !, *$ +$ and ' are transpositions of , -$ !$ and " are transpositions of ., and *( and *

are transpositions of &. )hey can be subdivided into five classifications according to the type of triad% / 0 ma1or$ ma1or$ minor$ and minor /henceforth denoted by 22mm0, /*0 ma1or$ augmented$ augmented$ and minor /233m0, /+0 ma1or$ minor$ augmented$ and diminished /2m3d0, /'0 ma1or$ diminished$ diminished$ and minor /2ddm0, /.0 four augmented /33330. )hus$ Slonimsky4s table can be reduced to six uni5ue combinations within the five different classifications. )he extra classification comes from the two nonisomorphic forms of two ma1or and two minor triadic subdivisions, 6xample denoted by 22mm and example - will be denoted by 2m2m. Slonimsky4s examples are% / a0 / b0 /*0 /+0 /'0 22mm 2m2m 23md 233m 2ddm 768 768 768 768 768 9:;3 9:3 7;:3 9:;3; 9;:;3 :3;7; :;3;7; 9;:;3; :37; :3;7; 8;<9; 8;<9; 8;<9 8;<9 8;<9 will be

)he missing triadic subdivision is 3ddd$ three diminished and an augmented chord. /-0 3ddd 79;:; 683; p. 8;<9 37;: =eyton

Matriarchal Me#achords $rossmutterakkords

In Thesaurus of Scales and Melodic Patterns by Nicolas Slonimsky$ a chord using all * note names and different intervals is called a "2utterakkord" /2other 7hord0, if

the chord is symmetrically inevitable$ then it is called a "8rossmutterakkord" /8rand 2other 7hord0. [p.*'+# In the liner notes of a recording of his music$ Slonimsky wrote that he discovered one of the grand monsters "in a moment of plenary inspiration in the afternoon of :ebruary +$ &+"." [>rion >?S !* ((# In Music Since 1900$ he further divulges that this moment occurred during a radio broadcast of the :ourth Symphony of )chaikovsky by the New @ork Ahilharmonic at '%+( p.m., however$ he failed to note during which movement or who was conducting. ['th ed.$ p. --'# 7omments concerning the 8rossmutterakkord were written by 6rnst =renek$ Aaul Bindemith$ and Sergei Arokofieff in Slonimsky4s guest book. Bindemith extended to it a long life and a good progeny$ while Arokofieff in effect said ")o the devil with grandmothers$ let us write musicC" 7onsidering the ordered collection of notes horiDontally rather than vertically process a "tone row". Slonimsky incorporates his 8rossmutterakkord in ">rion"$ the first of his "2initudes" for piano. >ther composers have also used his 8rossmutterakkord% =arl<irger <lomdahl in the futuristic opera Aniara$ Euigi Nono in Il %anto Sos&eso$ and 3lberto 8inastera in the cantata 'omar(o. )he 3ustrian composer :ritD =lein / "&*- &!!0 first used the term "2utterakkord"$ including one in his symphonic poem )ie Machine / &* , and in the article ":rontiers of the Semitone Forld" published in )ie Musik / &*.0$ =lein defines and gives the 2utterakkord reproduced in Music Since 1900. [p.'(!# )here are *+$ "' different 2utterakkords, fortunately$ some e5uivalence properties can reduce this to a more manageable .*(. /)his number will be computed by working backwards$ but by assuming its existence for now.0 )he operations of transposition and p.* =eyton

inversion can be employed to define e5uivalence relations on this set. :or instance$ since the sum of the intervals is -- and since by transposition the first note can be named "7"$ this reduces the number of 2utterakkords by G * to $&+*, note that the top note will always be ":;" five and a half octaves above. )hus$ another interval of semitones /the tritone0 will render another "7". Fith this another criterion for e5uivalence can be defined, the "?6H>EH6" of a 2utterakkord will be the concatenation of the se5uence following the occurrence of the tritone in the original mutterakkord with the beginning of the se5uence$ then transposed down a tritone.

6xample%

2utterakkord% Intervals% ?evolve% )ransposition% Intervals%

7$ 7;$ <$ 3;$ 8$ 9;$ 8;$ 9$ :$ 3$ 6$ :; $ ($ $ &$ "$ .$ -$ +$ '$ !$ *

9$ :$ 3$ 6$ :;$ 7$ 7;$ <$ 3;$ 8$ 9;$ 8; 7$ 9;$ 8$ 9$ 6$ 3;$ <$ 3$ 8;$ :$ 7;$ :; +$ '$ !$ *$ -$ $ ($ $ &$ "$ .

)hus$ the 2utterakkords which are e5uivalent to a given one are its revolve$ its inversion$ and the revolve of its inversion. 7omputations would be greatly facilitated if these four 2utterakkords were different, however$ it is possible for the original to be the transpose of it inversion, e.g.$ 7$ 7;$ 9;$ 3;$ 9$ :$ <$ 8;$ 6$ 3$ 8$ :;, or to be the transpose of its revolve, e.g.$ 7$ 7;$ 9;$ 8$ 9$ :$ <$ 3;$ 8;$ 6$ 3$ :;, or to be the transpose of the inversion$ /8rossmutterakkord0, e.g.$ /Slonimsky4s 8rossmutterakkord0 7$ 7;$ <$ 9$ 3;$ 9;$ 3$ 6$ 8;$ :$ 8$ :; [ - (-+-"-.---!-'-&-*which inverts to 7$ <$ 7;$ 3;$ 9$ 3$ 9;$ 8;$ 6$ 8$ :$ :; . Fithout these unfortunate phenomena$ determining the number of non-e5uivalent 2utterakkords would be simple% find all the 2utterakkords$ count and divide by four. )o find the non-e5uivalent 2utterakkords a method typical of solving many combinatorial problems was utiliDed% identify a delineative mathematical property of not p.+ =eyton #

being a 2utterakkord to eliminate the others. )he property used was based upon the fact that the intervalic se5uence can not contain any subse5uence which sums to a multiple of twelve /to eliminate the possibility of the same note name occurring twice0 and no left subse5uence can sum to a multiple of twelve plus six /to eliminate :; from occurring too early0. Ising these conditions$ a computer program was written and a systematic search was performed. )o minimiDe time$ only 2utterakkords with initial interval smaller than a tritone /-0 were sought, the others can be produced by inversion. )he reduction to the set of non-e5uivalent /non-isomorphic0 2utterakkords was achieved by then performing each of the e5uivalence tests$ transposing and checking for agreement. )he search produced a list of .*( 2utterakkords. <y working backwards using the argument above$ one can produce $&+* 2utterakkords$ which will then transpose to a total of *+$ "'. 7uriously the number of non-isomorphic 8rossmutterakkords$ produced by selecting them from the list of .*($ is ''$ the same number as the number of Bauerian )ropes. )here is no observable or known relationship between these two sets. )here are +( 2utterakkords which are e5uivalent to the inversion of their revolve. None of these can be 8rossmutterakkords$ but there are six of the 8rossmutterakkords in which the first half and the retrograde of the second half are transpositions is a selfrevolve. )here are other relationships as well$ several of the 8rossmutterakkords re5uire 1ust two pairs of notes to be switched to produce a self-revolve /see )able0.

2ichael =eyton$ Ah.9.

p.'

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)he interval se5uence of the '' non-e5uivalent 8rossmutterakkords 0 *0 +0 '0 .0 -0 !0 "0 &0 (0 0 *0 +0 '0 .0 -0 !0 "0 &0 *(0 * 0 **0 *+0 *'0 *.0 *-0 *!0 *"0 *&0 +(0 + 0 +*0 ++0 +'0 +.0 +-0 +!0 +"0 +&0 '(0 ' 0 '*0 '+0 ''0 -*-!-'-+---&-"-.- (-*-!-'-&---+-"-.- (-+-'-!-*--- (-.-"-&-+- (-!-"---'-.-*-&-'-+-*-.---!- (-&-"-'-&-*-.---!- (-+-"-"-!- (-+---&-*-.-'-"-!- (-&---+-*-.-'-&-'-!-*--- (-.-"-+-&- (-!-"---'-.-*-+- (-+-"-.---!-'-+-*- (-&-"-.---!-'-+-**- -'-+-!---.-&-"- - ( *- -'-&-!---.-+-"- - ( *- -!-+-'---"-&-.- - ( *- -!-&-'---!-+-.- - ( *- -"-.-+---&-!-'- - ( *- -"-.-&---+-!-'- - ( *-+-.- -'---"- -!-&- ( *-+- -.-'---"-!- -&- ( *-.-+- -'---"- -&-!- ( *-.-+- -"---'- -&-!- ( *-.-&- -'---"- -+-!- ( *-.-&- -"---'- -+-!- ( *-!- -+-'---"-&- -.- ( *-!- -&-'---"-+- -.- ( *-!-"- -+---&- -'-.- ( *-!-"- -&---+- -'-.- ( *-&-.- -'---"- -!-+- ( *-&- -.-'---"-!- -+- ( *- -+-.-"---'-!-&- - ( *- -+-!-'---"-.-&- - ( *- -&-.-"---'-!-+- - ( *- -&-!-'---"-.-+- - ( +- - (-.-'---!---*- -& +-*- -'-.---!-"- - (-& +-'- -*-!---.- (- -"-& +-.-*- -"---'- - (-!-& +-!- (- -'---"- -*-.-& +-"- - (-.---!-*- -'-& +- (- -"-!---.-'- -*-& +- -*-!-"---'-.- (- -& '- -*-+-'-.---&- (- -" '- -*-&-.---!-+- (- -"

)he interval se5uence of the +( non-e5uivalent self-revolves 0 *0 +0 '0 .0 -0 !0 "0 &0 (0 0 *0 +0 '0 .0 -0 !0 "0 &0 *(0 * 0 **0 *+0 *'0 *.0 *-0 *!0 *"0 *&0 +(0 -*-'-!-+--- - (-"-.-& -+- (-"-.--- -&-*-'-! -'-*-+-.--- -"- (-&-! -'-*-&-.--- -"- (-+-! -!-*-'-&--- -.- (-"-+ -!-"- (-+--- -.-'-*-& -"- (-!-&--- -'-*-.-+ -&-'-!-*--- -+-"-.- ( -&-!-*-"--- -+-.- (-' -&- (-!-"--- -+-*-.-' -&- (-"-.--- -+-*-'-! - (-.-+-"--- -*-!-&-' *- -'-+-!--- (- -"-&-. *- -.-"-+--- (- -!-'-& *-.-&- -'--- (-!-+- -" *-!- -"-&--- (-'- -!-+ *-"- -.-&--- (-'- -!-+ *-"-!- -+--- (-'-.- -& *- -+-!-'--- (- -&-.-" +- -.- (-'---&- -!-*-" +- - (-"-!---&- -*-'-. +-*-'- -.---&- (-"- -! +-*- -!-"---&- (- -.-' +-'-*- -!---&-"- (- -. +-.- -*-"---&-!- - (-' +- (-!- -'---&-*-.- -" +- -"- (-.---&- -'-*-! '-+- -*-.---"-&- - (-! '- (- -&-.---"-*- -+-! '- -*-&-.---"- - (-+-!

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