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He goes on: “And the next two notes on the hierarchy are E and G.” Those are the third and fifth notes of the C major scale, they make up the basis for the C major chord, and so they are of secondary importance.

Alisu is an IDM and dub producer who has been a major proponent of Chile’s underground music scene in the last few years. She uses both analog and digital synths so expect to hear everything from fat Moog thumps to wild FM synthesis sounds. What sets her apart is her creative and mesmerizing use of field recordings. There seems to be an underlying sense of nature interwoven into the very essence of her music. It’s almost impossible to describe but it’s as if she’s trying to pull us into an unknown tropical paradise.

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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.

What makes Madison so special for touring artists is the diverse nature of its musical culture. With a bubbling scene in everything from classical music to jazz to opera to summer music festivals, and more, Madison is a must stop for touring artists. It’s also home to labels like Crustacean Records and Kind Turkey Records. When it comes to live music, you can catch a show at the High Noon Saloon —named the “Best Venue” by a different organizations including Madison Magazine, the Madison Area Music Awards, and Isthmus — or any number of homey, intimate spaces like Kiki’s House of Righteous Music (shown above).