Damn The Flood
el gtr, perc, synth, fixed media (2ch)
Post:Ballet / The Living Earth Show

March 3, 2017
San Francisco, CA (US)

Travis Andrews, el gtr
Andy Meyerson, perc
Adrian Knight, synth
David Lackner, pre-recorded saxophone

Robert Dekkers, choreography
Kar Will, dance
Brett Conway, dance
Christian Squires, costume design
Sound: Richard Barley

︎︎︎Detailed Inventory

Electric guitar
Volume pedal
Boss DD-6 Delay (or equivalent)
Boss RV-5 Reverb (or equivalent)

Sizzle cymbal
China cymbal

Roland Juno 6, 60 or 106
Boss DD-6 Delay (or equivalent)
Boss RV-5 Reverb (or equivalent)

Prerecorded electronic track
(solo tenor saxophone by David Lackner)


As with so many of my works, ‘Damn the Flood’ began as a series of prototypes: scaffolds of harmonies, rhythms and formal contours, a dimly neon-lit fog bank full of promise, the faintest outlines of some great discovery pulling me forward and inward. A circular maze of great ambiguity emerging, I felt strangely captivated and yet distant from my own creation: how did I end up here? And how do I proceed? How to get out? The resulting work was in answer to such questions, but it also carried the mutant gene of ambiguity out of the laboratory into the exalted chambers of ‘the work’. The fleeting nature of running water and the timeless, malleable concept of an impending ‘flood’ were images that helped curate the selections made for the final version.

‘Damn the Flood’ was commissioned by Post:Ballet and was premiered on March 3, 2017 at SOMArts, San Francisco as part of a dance performance choreographed by Robert Dekkers, with Brett Conway and Kar Will, and costumes by Christian Squires.

The work is in one continuous movement with five distinct harmonic areas. Throughout, melodic fragments from ‘Here’s That Rainy Day’ gently obstruct the chords, foreshadowing the unexpected cameo of an invisible (prerecorded) saxophone towards the end.

The work is part of a series of works written for The Living Earth Show with or without additional instruments: ‘Humble Servant’ (percussion solo), ‘Family Man’ (electric guitar and percussion with electronics), and ‘Damn the Flood’, culminating in the massive 12-movement ‘Idea to Life (Success Stories)’ (alto sax, electric guitar, percussion, Rhodes/ synth), in which the formerly invisible David Lackner is now given the lead.

︎︎︎Score Excerpts

Copyright © by Adrian Knight 2023.