Three Gnossienes and a Dance
Erik Satie composed six Gnossiennes in total; the first three (as contained in this collection) were written and published in the early 1890s. All three are characterized by a slow tempo, repetitive bass and accompaniment pattern, and a simple yet chromatically colorful melody. Satie had developed an interest in Gnosticism at this point in his life; this likely influenced the title of this set of works. Despite the invented term, the Gnossiennes are considered dances, akin to similar Satie compositions such as his Sarabandes and Gymnopedies. It’s also possible to draw a connection from these pieces to Satie’s musique d’ameublement (“furniture music”), a pre-minimalist, ambient-friendly style of music.