When the COVID-19 pandemic put an end to Decibel New Music Ensemble’s touring plans for the year, the inventive new music group turned to its community of composers to commission 20 new works that will premiere online across 2020, with a new piece released every fortnight. Works by Louise Devenish, Lionel Marchetti, Dan Thorpe, Erik Griswold, Gail Priest and Lindsay Vickery – beautiful, eye-catching miniatures – are already online, and there are plenty still to come.

Lionel MarchettiA still from Lionel Marchetti’s La Patience from 2 Minutes from Home. Photo © Karl Ockelford

“Like almost every other music group, our planned concerts and tours for 2020 were cancelled or postponed in a sudden and complete way,” Decibel Artistic Director and composer Cat Hope tells Limelight. “The six members of Decibel are currently split evenly between Perth and Melbourne. Border closures have meant that we haven’t been able to travel between the two states, so even activities outside of lockdown, such as recording, have been impossible.”

The ensemble members decided early on in the pandemic that they wanted to keep playing together and continue commissioning and performing...