M C Maguire is a composer/producer who has created a very quirky post-modern hybrid that combines classical, pop, jazz, electro-acoustic, and world music traditions. He works primarily in his studios’ multi-track environment (up to 400 tracks) combining live recording, sampling, synths, exotic plugins, and digital editing possibilities. The finished product usually consists of a rigid, hierarchical, multi-layered construct, which is mathematically proportioned to reflect the philosophical / psychological thrust of each individual work’s raison d’être.
His 6th CD, Dystophilia, will be released in January 2024 on Neuma Records, featuring two large works for orchestra and electronics. His fifth CD, Transmutation of Things (2022) was was also released on Neuma Records. The previous Cds consist of Saturation Velocity( 2020) on Albany Record, Nothing Left to Destroy (2011), on Innova Records, and Trash of Civilizations (2009) on Innova Records. Finally, his first CD, Meta-Conspiracy, was released on John Zorn’s label, Tzadik, in 2007.
Reviews of his work include:”a knock-down, awe-inspiring stunner, Maguire disentangling sounds already ripped from their categorical moorings, fastidiously piling layer upon layer of elementary sonic detritus that crash in a tsunami of headrush crescendoes. Faint wisps of compositional recognition arise here and there but even if the classical pieces inform the bedrock on which Maguire builds, he’s too busy warping it all out of sense that sensibility is effectively obliterated. Symphonic sections swell only to be immediately handswiped by frenzied rhythmic mash-ups; ghostly chorales rise out of the murk for a few desperate moments then vanish into quicksand; frequencies collide with a nuclear energy akin to comets striking the sun. This is plunderphonics of gargantuan proportions, grand gestures born from a car-crash aftermath. It’s ‘classical’ music for the schizophrenic masses”
Also“it sounded as though Conlon Nancarrow had lived to re-imagine his impossible piano pieces in the sampler age“, “the most irritating and spellbinding composer since Philip Glass”, “the most original Canadian composer since R. Murray Schafer “, “Roll over Claude Vivier”, “will likely attract the same kind of cult following as Frank Zappa”, ‘Such thunderous stuff that you won’t know what hit you, none of the clichés or tropes of the pretenders are evident here. All you can do is strap yourself in and prepare for a wild ride’,” brushes away the dust from all classical music”,” New Music got newer”, “it destroys all the accepted ideas about aesthetics and beauty in Art”, ”one of the most astonishing CDs I’ve ever heard”, “a daunting brilliance exploding from the music”, “a long punch to the plexus that opens up your ears and saturates your brain cells”, “Guru of electronic manipulation”, ”This is music to completely drown yourself in and then end with a quiet ‘Amen’ “, “sprinkles a gleeful pee all over the world of genteel music-making”, ”Welcome to the future?”,” the supreme postmodernist”, ”we stand in awe of these mammoth constructions”, ”the music brims with ideas and abundant pleasures”, ”on the edge of a damaging collapse of the senses”, “teaches us something about ourselves and our culture”, “indescribably awesome stuff”, “absolutely nuts”, and “works to be heard to be believed”.
His work has been performed at Lincoln Center, the Victoriaville Festival in Quebec, the Stone and the Bang on a Can Marathon in NYC (4 times). Many performances have also occurred in his native Vancouver and his current residence, Toronto. Recently, Pianist Keith Kirchoff toured ‘Short History of Lounge’ through England, the U.S., and Mexico.
MC Maguire received his bachelors and Masters from UBC, Vancouver and did post-graduate work at Guildhall, London, and private study in Heidelberg, Germany. He also did Doctoral Studies at Eastman School of Music.
|2025||‘Without’ for Orchestra and CPU|
|2024||“Cooped” for Orchestra and CPU|
|2023||“Another Lucid Dream” (27 Mins) for Orchestra and CPU|
|2022||‘Yummy World” (23 mins) for Orchestra and CPU|
|2021||“Predisposition” (30 mins) for Orchestra and CPU|
|2021||” Apophis’ (42 mins) for Orchestra and CPU|
|2020||‘Shadow of Wings’ (47 mins) for piano and CPU|
|2019||‘a Teenage Dream’ (28 mins) for piano and CPU|
|2018||‘Sade auf Kashmir’ (21 mins) for cello and CPU|
|2010||‘S’Wonderful (that the man I love is watching over me)’(26mins) for flute and CPU|
|2009||‘Discofication of the Mongols’ (35 mins.) for violin and CPU|
|2008||‘The Spawn of Abe’ (27 mins.) for clarinet, oboe and CPU|
|2007||‘Narcissus auf Bali’ (39 mins.) for marimba, vibes, and CPU.|
|2006||‘Got that Crazy, Latin/Metal Feelin’ (27.mins.) for electric guitar and CPU.|
|2006||‘A Short History of Lounge’ (23 mins.) for piano and CPU.|
|2000||‘South African Black Ops eat Crow’ (1 hour) ballet for CPU|
|1999||‘Brunnhilde: Uber Model / Soccer-Mom oder Lesbo Fem-Nazi ?'(4 mins) for soprano, wind-controller, electric guitar, bass guitar, and drums|
|1993||Tristan, Doris, And Geraldo’ (18 mins.) for piano and CPU.|
|1992||‘A Hole in my Heart’ (18 mins.) text by Karen Connelly mezzo, vibes, tape|
|1991||‘Discipline, Obedience, and Submission’ (25 mins) for flute, oboe, clarinet, viola, bass, guitar, tape|
|1991||‘The Idiot’ (2 1/2 hrs) 0pera for 12 singers, tape|
|1990||‘Twenty-four Keys to World Domination’ (12 Mins.) for synthesizer, tape|
|1990||‘Love is Stronger than Pride’ (25 mins) for alto sax, vibes, electric organ, tape|
|1989||‘Dance around the Throne’ (15 mins.) for orchestra, tape|
|1988||‘Seven Years’ (43 Mins.) for flute, horn, alto sax, cello, marimba,piano, electric guitar, tape|
with Innova Records’ Philip Blackburn
- May 2013 Innova Records http://www.innova.mu/
Radio Interview Tom Schulte’s ‘Outsight Radio’
- November 2011 email@example.com USA
Naxos Interview with Colin Rae:
The Odd World of MC Maguire
- February 2010 Naxosblog USA
In an ongoing series of conversations with artists and composers I present a short YET eye-opening discussion with Innova recording artist MC Maguire.
Who r u?
There’s no delicate way to put this -I am an ex-con. But I’m determined it won’t impede my mercurial rise into the heady, glamorous world of international composition. I’ve paid my debt to society–if anything they owe me!!! Soon after my internment, I got mix up in the seedier side of music academia (I’m not sure when the punishment ended and the pedagogy began). It’s all a big hurtful, medicated blur–but from pain comes Art, right? Also I vaguely remember a glimpse of an impaled piano teacher, some fire in the trash in the theory dept. and blood coming from my dogs’ ears.
How did these works come about?
The two double concertos on the disk are the rewritten remixes of works conceived in the 90s, when my quill was afire and computers had the power of my current cell phone. One of the bitter ironies of life, is just as technology is allowing my 400 track albatrosi to come to true fruition, regular coinage from music’s infrastructure is shriveling, and some punk is illegally downloading a two second snippet of my masterpiece for a ringtone (that very kid is dead as we speak!!). The virtuosic bros who r playing on these pieces, live in the hood, have my back, even though I now or at one time owed them money, or have had at least one absinthe-induced altercation.
What inspires you and your work?
Theology, meta-physics, architecture, visual arts,my soiled, overused bios of Bismarck, Cromwell, Custer and Napoleon (St. Helena reflections), and the great carnivorous Pac-man of pop culture, infomercials, no limit holdem poker, mixed martial arts, as well as the numbing spewing forth of ghetto flora and fauna. For me, most music has become white noise–except for maybe the first movement of Mahler’s’ 9th (which I’ve made a career of subconsciously stealing/rewriting) which synchronistically is now playing iPod wallpaper for my weary Oblomov, remote mit hand-tremor, languishing on the chaise-lounge persona.
What are your musical “guilty pleasures”?
What immediately springs to mind is Wagner, as his aging prowess sputtered, he would drape himself in fine silk and frilly lingerie, and dowse himself in expensive ladies’ perfume– but this is clearly not the question. Suffice to say, I feel guilty saying publically ‘I am composer’–but its’ combined pretentiousness and anachronistic irrelevance brings me secret, impish pleasure.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be someone famous, who, when sashaying jauntily on the promenade with a coquettish female visage on my arm, or pontificating in my box at the theatre with societies’ crème of culture and learning–people might say in passing” now he clearly has the bull by the tail” or “there is a curtain je ne sais quoi about that fellow”, without knowing the actual meaning of the phrase.