HAIL is a quartet for double bass. The five movements make up a cycle of meters, beginning with eight and subsequently losing an eighth note: seven, six, five, and ending up at four (or back at eight, depending on how you look at it).
The first movement has all instruments playing arco. One bass in each subsequent movement switches to pizzicato for the duration of the work. The basses are arranged in an arc around the listener, and the technique changes go from the first to the fourth bassist – left to right.
When hail stones are formed, layers of ice build up on the original frozen water droplet while wind and heat carry the hailstones back up to their original elevation after beginning to fall. This process is mimicked by the technique and meter changes of the movements.
The current demo on Soundcloud was made with Sibelius 7.5.