Latest additions and reviews

19-29 August 2016

29 August 2016

Two new reviews:

Robert Wilson / Bernice Johnson Reagon: The Temptation of Saint Anthony, Studio Cast Recording. Songtalk Music (2006)

Unico Wilhelm van Wassenaer, Hendrik Focking. Sonatas for recorder/traverso & continuo. Pieter van Houwelingen, Henk Dekker Noami Hirschfeld. Erasmus Muziek Producties WVH 079 (1993)

…two CDs that I had bought from various eBay sellers, as part of their “other offers”, to benefit from decreasing postage rates on combined purchases. No significant discovery this time.

Listening to Compositions of Isang Yun-2: Violin Concerto from 1981, Akitko Tatsumi, Frankfurt Radio SO, Zdenek Macal, Camerata 32CM-68. Superb work, I need to review it.

Caught up on my daily log, 19-29 August.

Yesterday, 28 August 2011 was my big Isang Yun (1917-1995) day. It’s not that I’m deliberately jumping to the extremes, from A to Y. In fact, a new addition to my collection has been too much for my available shelf space, so one had to go out for the new one to slot in. But when I started reviewing on Amazon.com, a decade ago, one of my objectives was to review all he music of Isang Yun that I had. Ten years later, I’m still far from it – too much vying for one’s attention and listening time – but here is the chance to resume.

New review of:

Isang Yun: Works for flutes. Attaca Babel 9056-3 (1990)

reposted reviews from Amazon.com (with the deletion of some introductory notes that were too topical and not useful for the re-posting) of:

Compositions of Isang Yun-1: Selected works for Clarinet: Concerto for Clarinet (1981), “Riul” for Clarinet and Piano (1968), “Piri” (1971). Eduard Brunner, Bayerischer Rundfunk SO, Patrick Thomas, Aloys Kontarsky (piano). Camerata 32CM-46 (1988) originally posted on Amazon.com 14 July 2011

Compositions of Isang Yun-4: Double Concerto for Oboe, Harp and Small Orchestra, “Images” for Flute, Oboe, Violon and Violoncello. Heinz Holliger (oboe), Aurèle Nicolet (flute), Ursula Holliger (harp), Hansheinz Schneeberger (violin), Thomas Demenga (cello), Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken, Dennis Russell Davies. Camerata 32CM-108 (1989) originally posted on Amazon.com 14 July 2011

Compositions of Isang Yun- 5: Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra (1975/76), Sonata for Oboe, Harp and Viola (1979). Siegfried Palm, Berlin Radio SO, Hans Zender. Heinz & Ursula Holliger, Hirofumi Fukai. Camerata 32CM-22 (1987) originally posted on Amazon.com 22 October 2011

Compositions of Isang Yun-9: Concerto for Flute and Small Orchestra (1977), Salomo for Solo Alto Flute (1978), Gong-Hu for Harp and Strings (1984), In Balance for Harp (1987). Roswitha Staege (flute), Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken, Hans Zender. Ursula Holliger, Camerata Bern String Ensemble, Heinz Holliger. Camerata 32CM-109 (1991) originally posted on Amazon.com 22 October 2011

Created an Isang Yun introductory page and listed all the Yun in my CD collection. Still need to complete the page (correspondence between Camerata’s 11-CD series “Compositions of Isang Yun” and the 9-CD reissue “Art of Isang Yun”) and to write the short introduction on Yun and explain why I consider him one of the great contemporary composers. Going back to Camerata’s series was useful in that I was able to use the label’s barcode logic and locate some listings on Amazon of the “Art of Isang Yun” reissue series, that I had missed the first time around, in 2011, when I had reviewed those few instalments from “Compositions” and “Art”, because they are scripted in Japanese and don’t yield to a search on “Yun Camerata” (is it “instaLments” or “instaLLments”? I never know. Check dictionary: OK, it’s both, that’s why I never know). Apparently there are two listings for each, one using the actual CD barcodes and the other one using a barcode derived from it, which I am supposing is a distributor’s barcode rather than a specific barcode for an edition for the West. The Isang Yun website has also been useful in establishing issues and reissues (but I’ve spotted a few reissues that they are missing, and what I think are small errors in release datings).

Also listened to 20th Century Portraits: Isang Yun – Chamber Music: Novelette for flute & harp with violin and cello ad libitum. Piano Trio. Duo for Violoncello & Harp. Sonata for Violin & Piano. Kolja Lessing (violin), Walter Grimmer (cello), Holger Groschopp (piano), Maria Graf (harp), Roswitha Staege (flute). Capriccio 67 118 (2005) while I was doing that. Need to listen again more carefully and review. Time time time.

25 & 26 August 2016

Posted review of Dance (works of Tunde Jegede, Joe Cutler, John Adams, Graham Fitkin, Andrew Poppy, Michael Finnissy, Tan Dun, Kevin Volans, Michael Nyman, Jon Lord, Gabriel Prokofiev, Elena Kats-Chernin, Domacha Dennehy, Django Bates) by The Smith Quartet. Signum Classics SIGCD236 (2011) and had to create 13 composers pages. A Helluvalot o’work for just one CD.

Since Graham Fitkin was one of those composers and The Smith Quartet are the performers, I also imported from Amazon my recent review of Graham Fitkin: Slow. Huoah. Frame. The Smith Quartet, Graham Fitkin & Shelag Sutherland (keyboards). Argo 433 690-2 (1992).

Created a performers page for The Smith Quartet.

Also Listened to Ghosts, another recital CD by The Smith Quartet, which includes superb pieces by Tim Souster, Michael Alcorn and Stephen Montague, frightening music, very reminiscent of George Crumb’s incredibly inventive and frighteneing “Black Angels”. But there’s a big stain on the edge of the CD and the last 12 minutes of the Montague didn’t play. Frustrating. Reported to the Amazon seller (Zoverstocks) and got a refund no problem. Ordered the CD again (from the same seller. Zoverstocks is reliable, they have a huge inventory, attractive prices and make no problem at refunding when there’s a problem).

24 August 2016

Music for Merchants and Monarchs (works for lute, archlute and guitar from the Renaissance by Anonymous, Newsidler, Foscarini, Robinson, Mellii, Calvi, Galilei). James Tyler, Renaissance lute, Archlute, Baroque guitar. Saga Classics SCD 9036, barcode 8711572903621 / Saga Classics EC 3365-2. Not the kind of CD I’d normally go for, but I was examining the CD reissues of the (originally British) label Saga Classics. Complicated story, that’ll be for one of my discographies one day.

23 August 2011

Continuing the As, this was my Lera Auerbach day. One new review:

Lera Auerbach Plays her Preludes and Dreams for piano. BIS-CD-1462 (2006)

and two previous ones imported from Amazon.com:

Lera Auerbach 24 Preludes for Violin & Piano, T’filah, Postlude. Vadim Gluzman, Angela Yoffe. BIS-CD-1242 (2003) originally posted on Amazon.com, 21 November 2013

Lera Auerbach: Celloquy. Ani Aznavoorian, Lera Auerbach. Cedille Records CDR 90000 137 (2013) originally posted on Amazon.com, 31 July 2016

21 August 2016

Imported from Amazon my reviews of:

De Profundis” (works of Sibelius, Pärt, Šerkšnytė, Schumann, Nyman, Schubert, Tickmeyer, Shostakovich, Auerbach, Piazzolla, Pelēcis, Schnittke). Gidon Kremer, Kremerata Baltica. Nonesuch 7559 79969 9 (2010), originally posted on Amazon.com, 19 January 2011. Still need to create some of the composers entries for that one. Those recital discs are lots of work when you want to log them.

Martynas Švėgžda von Bekker: 20th-Century Lithuanian Composers (Balsys, Balakauskas, Barkauskas, Bartkevieiûté, Borisovas). Dante LYSC004 (1997), a rare CD from the French Dante label, review originally posted on Amazon.com, 9 February 2012. You’d think all Lithuanian composers started with letter B. And I loooove those diacritic signs, went to Wikipedia to fish them (was surprised and delighted to see that the fiddler has an entry there), quicker than to find them on my computer. Created the composers entries for those five.

Created my Performers Index and performers pages for Kremer and Bekker.

20 August 2016

Continuing Firsova and Smirnov. Reposted from Amazon.com two ANCIENT reviews:

Lydian String Quartet in Moscow: Firsova, Chausian, Child, Lee. MCA Classics AED 10108 (1990), originally posted on Amazon.com, 18 February 2007

Stravinsky, Schnittke, Smirnov, Roslavets, Firsova: Music for String Quartet, by the Chilingirian Quartet. Conifer Classics 75605 51252 2 (1995), originally posted on Amazon.com, 17 February 2007

Since I had created the label entry for the French label Transes Européennes after re-posting my two Aperghis CD from that label (see 17 & 18 August), decided to bring over from Amazon my reviews of other instalments from that label:

Jean-Pierre Drouet Solo en public à Banlieues Bleues. Trans-Européeenes TE 004, originally posted on Amazon.com, 18 May 2016

Jean-Pierre Drouet: Les Variations d’Ulysse, music for a choreography of Jean-Claude Gallotta. Jean-Philippe Audin (cello), Claude Barthélémy (guitars), Marie-Isabelle Bondu (viola), Xavier Charles (clarinet), Pascal Contet (accordion), Jean-Pierre Drouet (percussion), Serge Garcia (violin), Eric Giausserand (trumpet). Transes Européennes TE 006 (1995), originally posted on Amazon.com, 14 May 2016

Pablo Cueco: Sol, Suelo, Sombra Y Cielo. Transes européennes Orchestra, Pablo Cueco (berimbao, zarb), dir. Patricio Villarroel. Transes Européennes TE 023 (1999), originally posted on Amazon.com, 29 May 2016

Also imported my review of:

Kronos Quartet: White Man Sleeps. Elektra Nonesuch 979 163-2 (1987) or 7559-79163-2, originally posted on Amazon.com, 18 July 2010. I need to create the composers entries and links for that one.

19 August 2011

Since I was doing Aperghis and was coming to his Hamletmaschine-oratorio, decided to post as well my review of Wolfgang Rihm’s own Hamletmaschine, and, while I was at it, his Tutuguri-Ballet after Antonin Artaud. Reposted from Amazon, then:

Georges Aperghis: [die hamletmaschine-oratorio]. SWR Vokalensemble Stuttgart, Françoise Kubler (sop), Lionel Peintre (bar), Romain Bischoff (bar), Geneviève Strosser (viola & voice), Jean-Pierre Drouet (percussion & voice), Ictus, dir. Georges-Elie Octors. Cypès Records Cyp5607 (2002), originally posted on Amazon.com, 30 April 2009

Wolfgang Rihm: Die Hamletmaschine, music theatre in five parts (1983-1986). Libretto by the composer after the text of Heiner Müller. Soloists, Chor und Orchester des Nationaltheaters Mannheim, Peter Schneider. Wergo WER 6195-2 / 286 195-2 (1991), originally posted on Amazon.com, 2 May 2009

Wolfgang Rihm: Tutuguri (1982). Radio Sinfonie-orchester Stuttgart des SWF, SWF Vokalensemble Stuttgart, Fabrice Bollon. Hänssler Classics CD 93.069 (©2001-℗2002), originally posted on Amazon.com, 27 April 2009

 Realized I had never reviewed Rihm’s Eroberung von Mexico and pulled it out of my shelves for a new listen. Need to find the time now.

Continuing my exploration of the label Megadisc Classics. New review (posted two days before on Amazon) of:

Georgs Pelēcis: Revelation. Gidon Kremer, Kremerata Baltica. Megadisc Classics MDC 7797 (2009)

and since Pelēcis’ Double Concerto for violin and piano, performed on that disc, was also featured on Kremer’s earlier CD “From My Home”, I re-posted my review from Amazon:

From My Home”: works of Dvarionas, Pärt, Barkauskas, Vasks, Pelēcis, Plakidis, Tüur. Gidon Kremer (violin), Vadim Sacharov (piano), Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie. Teldec Classics 0630-14654-2 (1997), originally posted on Amazon.com, 25 January 2016

But I can’t say that I take this Pelēcis very seriously, and the title of my review of the Megadisc CD summarizes my opinion: “It’s not the flowers of paradise that Pelēcis is gardening but cheap plastic avatars”.

Need to see how I’m going to work out my “Discographies” pages. Uploaded my discography of EMI Reflexe. Need to work on that.

18 August 2016

Continuing the As. Where’s a better place to start a collection than with Carl Friedrich Abel – alphabetically, I mean. Imported my reviews from Amazon and created a composers entry:

Carl Friedrich Abel: Chamber Music for flute. La Stagione. Cpo 999 209-2 (1994), originally posted on Amazon.com, 14 December 2015

Carl Friedrich Abel: 4 Flute Concertos. Karl Kaiser, La Stagione, Michael Schneider. Cpo 999 208-2 (1993), originally posted on Amazon.com, 14 December 2015

Karl Friedrich Abel: Ouvertures Sinfonias. Il Fondamento, Paul Dombrecht. Vanguard Classics 99703 (1994), originally posted on Amazon.com, 7 March 2010

Carl Friedrich Abel: Symphonies op. 10. La Stagione, Michael Schneider. Cpo 999 207-2 (1993), originally posted on Amazon.com, 10 December 2015

Since I had done Firsova, it seemed a good idea to do her husband too, Dmitri Smirnov. Imported my recent Amazon review:

An Introduction to Dmitri Smirnov. Patricia Kopatchinskaya (violin), Alexander Ivashkin (cello), Ivan Sokolov (piano). Megadisc Classics MCD 7818 (2002)

Continuing Aperghis: two reviews imported from Amazon:

Georges Aperghis: Tryptique (1982). Brigitte Sylvestre (harp) & Gaston Sylvestre (percussion). Transes Européennes TE 014 (1997), originally posted on Amazon.com, 11 May 2016

Georges Aperghis: Simulacres 1, A Bout de bras, Les Sept crimes de l’amour, Cinq couplets, Il gigante Golia, 280 Mesures pour clarinette. Ensemble Accroche-Note. Accord 201992 (1992), originally posted on Amazon.com, 11 May 2015 (total coincidence that they were posted exactly a year apart, only realized it now that I write the two dates one after the other)

Created entries for the label Transes Européennes, and, following the re-posting of my review of the Arditti-Trio Le Cercle Montaign CD, for composers Xenakis, Allain Gaussin and François-Bernard Mâche. Need to import my Amazon reviews of Mâche and Xenakis. Time time time.

17 August 2016

Continuing Aperghis. Created a composer’s entry for Aperghis. New review of:

Georges Aperghis: Parcours. Jean-Pierre Drouet, Claudine Brahem. Transes Européennes TE 008 (1995) (in fact a review that I had written some time ago, but forgot to post on Amazon because I need to scan the front and back cover first)

Reposted Amazon reviews of:

Pauline Vaillancourt, soprano sings Récitations (14, 12, 11, 10a, 10b, 9, 8a, 8b, 8c, 7, 5, 3) by , Canti del Capricorno (1, 3, 5, 8, 12, 13, 16, 17, 18) by Giacinto Scelsi.  Société Nouvelle d’Enregistrement SNE-571-CD (1990) originally posted on Amazon.com, 7 December 2009

The Arditti Quartet Edition: Arditti String Quartet & Trio Le Cercle play Compositions for String Quartet & Percussion Trio by Georges Aperghis, François-Bernard Mâche, Iannis Xenakis, Allain Gaussin. Disques Montaigne 782002 (1991) originally posted on Amazon.com, 10 May 2015, transferred with additional information on the reissues

Created a composer’s entry for Scelsi.

 

16 August 2016

Since I’m doing the As: pulled out of my shelves my two CDs of Barry Anderson (Continuum) and reviewed:

Barry Anderson: Mask (Mask. Two Songs Penyeach. Sound the Tucket Sonance… And the Note to Mount. Colla Voce). Continuum CCD 1008 (1989)

Barry Anderson: Arc and other electronic works. Continuum CCD 1009 (1989)
Electro-acoustic Fanfare for computer tape / Arc for bass clarinet, string quartet, computer tape & electronics (1987): Harry Sparnaay, Mistry SQ, cond. Stephen Montague / Piano piece 1 for piano & tape, 2 for amplified piano, 3 for piano & electronics (1969-74): Sally Mays, Stephen Montague / Domingus for voice & tape (1978): John Franklin Robbins, speaker

Created Anderson’s composer’s page.

Created an introductory page to The Discographies, and an introductory page to The Reviews. I’m not sure at this point what’s going to be the difference between the discographies of labels and the Labels Index. Created the Alphabetical Index of Composers Reviewed – the main entry, really, to all the reviews.

 

15 August 2016

“Le 15 août”. France is on holidays (isn’t it always?). What better time would there be to start working on my website… Where to start? Well, why not with my latest listen and review:

Elena Firsova: The Mandelstam Cantatas: Forest Walks op. 36 (1987), Earthly Life op. 31 (1984), Before the Thunderstorm op. 70 (1994). Ekaterina Kichigina (soprano), Studio for New Music Moscow, Igor Dronov. Megadisc Classics MDC 7816 (2004)

And then, where else to start than with the As? They’re first, and, unlike the Bs and Cs and Ds, they’re not too abundant. And I loooove the music of Georges Aperghis, I think his Récitations are a brilliant and witty piece of contemporary vocal virtuosity, and his Sextuor (which I saw live around the time of its premiere) a superb, witty and imaginative piece of music theatre. So I re-posted my Amazon.com reviews, with, for Récitations, a substantial re-organization and more precise info on the various reissues, thanks to the barcode information and online cover photos.

Georges Aperghis: Récitations (excerpts). Martine Viard. Disques Montaigne CD 782007 (1992) originally posted on Amazon.com, 28 April 2009

Georges Aperghis: Sextuor – L’Origine des espèces, on texts by François Régnault and Georges Aperghis. Elena Andreyev (cello and speaker), Emmanuelle Zoll (soprano 1), Donatienne Michel-Dansac (soprano 2), Françoise Degeorges (soprano 3), Valérie Joly (mezzo-soprano), Frédérique Wolf-Michaux (contralto). Musique française d’aujourd’hui MFA 216004 (1995) originally posted on Amazon.com, April 27, 2009

Since I mentioned Heiner Goebbels’ “Ou bien le débarquement désastreux” in my review of Aperghis’ Sextuor, I went ahead and imported my Amazon review of that one too.

Heiner Goebbels: Ou bien le débarquement désastreux. André Wilms (voice), Sira Djebate (vocals), Boubakar Djebate (kora, vocals), Moussa Sissoko (djembe), Yves Robert (trombone), Alexandre Meyer (electric guitar, table-guitar, daxophone), Xavier Garcia (keyboards, sampling and programming), Heiner Goebbels (sampling and programming). ECM New Series 1552 (1995) originally posted on Amazon.com, 25 April 2009