Decay – Eva-Maria Houben

Recorded organ sound and piano sounds.

One hour one minute. 

A very, very soft organ sound in the background, with interruptions.

"A few years back I attended a talk given by Eva-Maria in which she beautifully discussed her interest in how sounds decay, dissolving into whatever they fall into, the exact point when they end never entirely clear. Decay is a quite lovely study of that simple phenomena. The organ sounds are typically Houben, long, earthily low and very, very quiet, so quiet in fact that at normal volume and without headphones they are barely discerned at all when they are present, and when they disappear, as they do in part of the piece, you barely notice. Then into this nearly blank canvas Houben drops a series of single piano notes of varying pitch and timbre, some cleanly struck, some played with prepared strings. Each however is allowed to decay slowly and naturally, so dissolving into the faintly tinted background. The effect is like throwing stones into a still pond and watching the resulting rings of ripples expand and die away, the point when the ripples are no longer perceivable impossible to ascertain." - Richard Pinnell


Eva-Maria Houben / organ, piano


Recorded by Bileam Kümper and Eva-Maria Houben at Thomas Morus, Krefeld (Germany) 2013.

Available as 320k MP3 or 16bit FLAC   

Eva-Maria Houben

Eva-Maria Houben has been performing works for the organ for more than 30 years. As she is related to the “wandelweiser-group” of composers, her compositions are published by “edition wandelweiser”, Haan. Her list of compositions up to now includes works for the organ, piano, clarinet, trombone, violoncello and other solo instruments, works for voice and piano, for wind and chamber ensembles, for orchestra and for voice and orchestra, works for choir ( She publishes on subjects of contemporary music (Steiner, PFAU, Edition Howeg, bis-label Oldenburg). Since 2000 her music has been published by Edition Wandelweiser (Haan). CDs have also been released by Another Timbre, Irritable Hedgehog and Makro. In 2012 she founded her own label diafani (