NIKOLAI KAPUSTIN – PIANO CONCERTO NO 5
FRANK DUPREE & ADRIAN BRENDLE, piano
MEINHARD ‘OBI’ JENNE & FRANZ BACH, percussion
DOMINIK BEYKIRCH, conductor
CAPRICCIO C5495 58’44
Kapustin’s jazz-infused music is often spirited and always fresh. His expressive writing for the piano always makes me want to hear more and Frank Dupree obviously shares this love, revelling in this music in another wonderful recording. Alongside the No 5 Concerto is a Concerto for 2 pianos and percussion and Sinfonietta for piano four hands in both of which he is joined by fellow pianist Adrian Brendle.
MARCO PUTZ – MOODS
KARL BERKEL, tuba
PHILLIPE SCHWARTZ, euphonium
COTTBUS STATE THEATRE PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA
ALEXANDER MERZYN, conductor
NAXOS 8.579116 69’16
Some lesser heard timbres are to the fore here in this lovely CD of music, the 2nd volume of Naxos’ Luxembourg Contemporary Music strand. With the oldest piece here dating from 2009 (and revised since then) this is certainly contemporary music. Inventive and colourful and with all but the title track being world premiere recordings, there is much to explore and enjoy here.
LUIS HUBERTO SALGADO – CHAMBER MUSIC 1
NAXOS 8.579128 74’31
With a range of instruments and drawing extensively on folk and dance music and utilising classical forms and modernist influences this recording collects four pieces from a lesser known twentieth century composer. Described as “essentially self-taught” Salgado blends his Ecuadorian heritage with mid century musical developments to find his own voice, given a new audience here by the collective of talented musicians. Here we have viola and cello sonatas, a woodwind quintet and Selene, commemorating the moon landing of 1969.
ANTON RUBINSTEIN – PRELUDES & ETUDES
MARTIN COUSIN, piano
NAXOS 8.574426 87’41
A comprehensive programme of beautiful wellcrafted 19th Century piano music which should be better known. Lovely performances by Martin Cousins are presented here of the complete Six Preludes, Op 24 and Six Etudes, Op 81. Also included here are the Op 1 Etude (Ondine) and a further Etude in C major in a world premiere recording.
INGI BJARNI – FARFUGLAR
INGI BJARNI, piano
INGI BJARNI QUINTET
A wonderful sequence of gently hypnotic contemporary Icelandic jazz from Ingi Bjarni and his quintet is to be found on this new release. The title track translates as Travelling Birds and this image of migrating birds and the need within nature to regularly move in such ways for “nourishment, continuity and survival” underpins the music here. Lovely!
CHARLES WUORINEN: A TRIBUTE – MUSIC NY WUORINEN & JS BACH
STEVEN BECK, piano
BRIDGE 9573A/B 2”4’15 (2 CDs)
Steven Beck has a long established relationship with Wuorinen, the influential American composer who died in 2020. This release pairs his music with that of JS Bach, who, together with other baroque and early classical composers were very important influences. The first disc contains seven of Wuorinen’s piano works from this century including the six pieces from The Haroun Piano Book together with longer works including Heart Shadow, Adagio and Scherzo. The second disc couples Bach’s Goldberg Variations with the Prelude & Fugue in A major, BWV 864.
SAX: CONTEMPORARY CONCERTOS FOR SAXOPHONE
MARCUS WEISS, saxophone
TEODORO ANZELLOTTI, accordion
WDR SINFONIEORCHESTER, ELENA SCHWARZ & EMILIO POMARICO
WINDKRAFT TIROL, KASPER DE ROO
WERGO WER 73892 71’12
Not only is it unusual to find orchestral music with the saxophone to the fore but we also find here music that brings out a wide range of rhythmic and timbral variety. This is exciting accessible contemporary music. There are four works – Peter Eotvos’ Focus, Georg Friedrich Haas’ Konzert, Vykintas Baltakas’ Saxordionphonics & Violent Incidents by Johannes Maria Staud.
KJETIL HUSEBO – YEARS OF AMBIGUITY
KJETIL HUSEBA, synthesizers, electronics etc
EVIND AARSET, guitar, samples, FX
ARVE HENRIKSEN, trumpet, synthesizers
Immersive electronics with additional collaborative input makes for a soundtrack presumably inspired by the lockdown years. There is little information to guide the listener but the album will please those who appreciate layered textures and spaced out, ambient forms.
LONG DAYS, SHORT NIGHTS
DAVIS ROBB DUO
DAVIS ROBB EDAR001
A lockdown project from husband and wife Emily Davis (violin) and Andrew Robb (double bass) in this their first collaboration as a duo. Delightfully varied, this CD brings together music in different styles and from different genres. The Latin vibes of Nao Me Toques (de Abreu) and Estrellita (Ponce) rub shoulders with Schubert’s Du bist die Ruh, songs from Gershwin and Rodgers as well as a Nocturne by Lili Boulanger and a newly commissioned work from fellow Scot, Catriona Price, from which the album takes its name. Pianist Thomas Gibbs also features on three of the tracks joins seamlessly with the already well-matched forces!
MUSICA FICTA, BO HOLTEN, conductor
FREDRIK BOCK, lute
SOREN CHRISTIAN VESTERGAARD, organ
DA CAPO 8.226142 64’58
This is an excellent production, charting the development of liturgical music in Denmark from the times when the church’s song was in the hands of the professionals to the reformations which brought about congregational psalm and hymn singing. Fine performances take the listener on a well constructed journey through other European choral styles to the full blown Protestant hymn. There are a few instrumental treatments along the way which add colour and variety. The excellent detailed (but not overly technical) booklet makes this a very useful reference piece as well as being an enjoyable listening experience in its own right.