I was asked very last minute if I'd write a piece for the International Euphonium Institute Gala Concert, and I obliged. War Machine was written in 3 hours and has become one of my most played pieces! It was premiered by Adam Frey and the War Machine Quartet
Review: ITEA JOURNAL VOLUME 40 NUMBER 3 (SPRING 2013)
The piece is composed in a thick scoring using many soaring melodies and forward moving rhythms. O'Toole incorporates the use of many odd meters and syncopation to take the listener through a wild ride. 5/4 to 7/8 meters are used in conjunction with 3/4 and 5/4 meters to help keep the work interesting without involving many slow sections. Unison rhythms are included throughout the piece and the melodic material appears as if growing out of the complex unison rhythm. This melodic material is performed in a light playful manner but quickly returns to the unison rhythms for a strong finish.
This work is part of the growing repertoire for euphonium quartet and is sure to spur additions to this unique ensemble.