Nikolai: I’ll try to kill two birds with a single (mischievous) stone that answers this as well as the following question. ‘Musical physics’ would be a more accurate term for it. The considerable corporeal tension that we experience and create on stage, the expansive gestures, the wide eyes and, often, the direct physical contact with each other and the audience, is nothing more than an attempt to experience the music, something immaterial, within your body, something utmost material.
As you visualise the rhythm and the melody, the body itself becomes a sign, a symbol. A burning bush, if you will. You could say it’s a deliberate strategy or method. The dancing girl from Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring converting the physical into the metaphysical right before the tribe’s eyes comes to mind. The intensity of dancing almost always leads you to the point of physical exhaustion. Often you want to vomit or pass out for a bit. Both the former and the latter bring us right up to the edge. Beyond it, perhaps, is where the notorious 'meta-' begins.
Sasha: Personally, I don’t remember saying that. But maybe that means that music must be free of genres. When a rock band plays, say, some heavy metal, the music flows along pre-existing boundaries, simply and predictably, filling existing patterns, obeying the laws of physics. And the listeners are happy because they recognise the genre. Thus, the very existence of the heavy metal genre is a metaphysical fact – according to Plato – as genres exist ‘in our heads,’ while the specific heavy metal track that’s being played – a physical one. But if you use heavy metal to add some stylistic ‘flavour’ to a track, that’s when it becomes something metaphysical, capable of manipulating both the listener’s joy and frustration. Just when they start to recognise something – you pull the rug from under them. According to my theory, that’s how the listener elevates themselves to the ‘metaphysical’ level. And then they quit drinking, stop beating women and get a job... Just kidding.