In 2000, Rattle Records released Pulse, two discs of orchestral and chamber compositions by Jack Body, including field recordings of the original non-Western music that inspired them.

Passing By brings us up to date with 13 further pieces.

The range is prodigious, opening with three works played by NZTrio; the 1995 Nocturne is a hypnotic charmer, chiming and plucking its way into the inevitable arms of Morpheus.

The oldest offering, Musik Dari Jalan, won top prize at the 1976 Bourges International Competition for Electronic music - a remarkably fresh soundscape, constructed from real life, recorded on a busy Indonesian street.


Intimate History No 1 features the composer's partner Yono Soekarno telling tales and dealing out frank sexual revelations against a scuffed electronic background.

Intimate History No 2, titled Sssteve, transforms a stuttering colleague into a verbal toccata.

David Radzynski, an American competitor at the 2013 Michael Hill International Violin Competition, gives Body's test piece, Caravan, a wild and wonderful workout.

Pianist Stephen De Pledge has been coaxed into the studio to play The Street Where I Live, one of the Landscape Preludes he commissioned.

De Pledge works his own frisky flurries around the late composer's recorded voice, talking about his beloved Aro Valley home.

Body's 1979 Aeolian Harp is a whispering beauty in a 1998 recording by cellist Alexander Ivashkin.

The whirling textures of Epicycle are slightly blunted by the raw intonation of the Del Sol Quartet, but Arum Manis, recorded in Wellington by Kronos Quartet during their 2013 New Zealand tour, is pure cotton candy magic. More recently, Body was drawn to American jazz and blues, and his Tribute to the Blues is the most substantial work here. It is uneven, at its least convincing in a straggling Mary Lou's Dream but the movements that filter Alan Lomax field records through Stroma's instrument ensemble reveal a potent cultural mix.

Verdict: A generous and fascinating survey of a force in New Zealand music.


Jack Body (1944-2015)

New Zealand music lost one of its heroes with the passing of Jack Body last Sunday.

His almost pastoral tending for fellow composers was legendary; few have been untouched by his love, support and generosity.

As a composer, his was an original voice made felt from the theme to Close to Home to the melange of Songs and Dances of Desire, one of the highlights of the 2013 Auckland Arts Festival.