Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World

Prices shown exclude VAT. (UK tax is not payable for deliveries to United States.)
See Terms & Conditions for p&p rates.

Makan: Letting Time Circle Through

Makan: Letting Time Circle Through


Russell Greenberg (percussion), David Shively (cimbalom), Dan Lippel (acoustic guitar), Taka Kigawa (piano), Jennifer Choi (violin), John Popham (cello)

Keeril Makan (b. 1972) composed his longest instrumental work to date, Letting Time Circle Through Us (2013), on commission for the New York City-based ensemble Either/Or, with whose musicians Makan has worked intimately over the course of many years and on several projects. The larger trajectory of Makan's musical explorations has not been a linear one, so this close collaboration was invaluable in arriving at the final recorded realization of the project.

A near-constant in Makan's work is his use of the power of expectation and disruption via the establishment, continuation, variation, and interruption of musical cycles, whatever their content. Repetition and recurrence, periodicity - whether of rhythm or of complete musical fragments - change things, are capable of completely upending the listener's expectation of the syntax and flow of an idea, and thus of its expressive significance within a piece. Related to this are parallels between musical periodicity and the cycles we experience in life - sunrise/sunset, the phases of the moon, the seasons, and other, including perhaps more personal patterns - that are reflected explicitly in Indian and Indonesian musical traditions.

These patterns or recurrence are acknowledged, at least obliquely, in Letting Time Circle Through Us, Makan's most direct and extended engagement with cyclic structures and periodicity. To quote his brief description of the piece, "The friction between two contrasting types of music creates the emotional journey of Letting Time Circle Through Us. From the foundation of a single note, stable music emerges that repeats throughout the piece. Between these repetitions, singular, novel musical events occur which contrast with the initial stability. Over time, these singular events darken, while the repetitions of the opening music strain to move past the stressful interruptions. Eventually the desire for a return to stability merges with the reality of continual change, and the tension of the piece dissipates."

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80791

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Rorem: Our Town

Rorem: Our Town


Matthew DiBattista (Stage Manager), Donald Wilkinson (Dr. Gibbs, the town doctor), Glorivy Arroyo (Mrs. Soames), Brendan Buckley (George Gibbs), Margot Rood (Emily Webb), Angela Gooch (Mrs. Webb)

Monadnock Music, Gil Rose

This is the world-premiere recording of Ned Rorem's (b. 1923) acclaimed setting of Thornton Wilder's Our Town, one of the best-known plays of the 20th century and a staple of every US household.

Intended from the start to be a chamber opera, the orchestration is small, and the scoring is light and transparent throughout, consistent with a work best suited to young voices. Rorem moves in and out of speech and utilises more elevated recitative (parlando) than in his previous theatrical works. He manifests Wilder's 'emotional shyness' with abrupt stylistic cross-cutting between Americana (Thomsonian faux-Protestant hymns, plush sustained cinematic strings, Copland-esque woodwind solos, Ivesian collages), transatlantic modernism (the tartly-scored 'sting' chords, jagged, off-kilter ostinatos in close-canon, denatured melodic fragments in place of memorable tunes), and Gallic lyricism (rapturous string obbligatos, sudden snatches of emotionally-vibrant melody, Debussy-esque orchestration). Everywhere in the music there is a sort of cool, self-contained regretfulness, the regret so central to the play's initial impetus, a regret so intense as to border on dread, that perfectly underpins and undercuts the sentimentality of the portraits.

Rorem believes that Satie's Socrate may be 'the greatest of all operas.' Certainly, he exploits in his score for Our Town the same kind of baroque cantata textures and effects as Satie did in his 1920 masterpiece. But the Rorem and McClatchy Our Town also contains in the propulsive, off-kilter ostinati percolating uneasily beneath the Nantucket matter-of-factness of its musical surfaces and its stubborn unwillingness to wear its heart on its sleeve, an astonishing undercurrent of unanticipated, and highly effective dramaturgical fury.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80790

(CD - 2 discs)

Normally: $32.75

Special: $26.20

(also available to download from $20.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Garland: The Birthday Party

Garland: The Birthday Party


Garland, P:

The Birthday Party

Blessingway

Amulet


Aki Takahashi (piano)

On first hearing, the piano music of Peter Garland (b. 1952) creates a feeling of dislocation, then astonishment: It is so very different from the contemporary concert music we are familiar with. The composer’s intent, his emotional directness is immediate—despite the unusual sound world and different sense of time that these pieces exhibit.

The three pieces on this CD, The Birthday Party (2014), Blessingway (2011–12) and Amulet (After Roberto Bolaño) for 4 pianos (2010), are quite different in nature from much of Garland’s previous writing for piano, more lyrical than dramatic in feeling. The Birthday Party in particular is the work of an artist looking back—pensive, even nostalgic, open to musical associations. The Birthday Party is explicitly a study in both memory and loss; in Garland’s own words it is not just a “toast” to Aki Takahashi, the dedicatee, on her birthday, but also to “. . . those who are still with us [and to] our friends and loved ones who are no longer alive.”

Blessingway takes its title from a Navajo ceremony, but its use here must be seen as reflecting a purely personal association of some kind for Garland rather than any literary or musical connection to the ceremony in the piece.

Amulet was written for Aki Takahashi. She herself consecutively recorded all four parts before they were mixed down. Garland’s original concept, explained in his introduction to the piece, was “. . . that these are not four separate pianos; but rather they form one big piano, the sum of their parts.” Amulet is in large part a humorous work, albeit one with a dark side.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80788

(CD)

Normally: $15.00

Special: $12.75

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Vitale, W: Mikrokosma

Vitale, W: Mikrokosma

Baumbusch


The Lightbulb Ensemble, Santa Cruz Contemporary Gamelan, Brian Baumbusch

Brian Baumbusch (b. 1987) is a composer/performer based in Northern California working at the nexus between contemporary American and contemporary Indonesian music. Wayne Vitale (b. 1956) is a composer and educator who has long been inspired by the music of Bali, Indonesia. He has studied and collaborated with many of Bali's finest musicians and ensembles.

Mikrokosma (2014-15) is an exploration in sound and light of the "microcosms" of Bali-Hindu cosmology, where the universe is reflected and re-created in all its parts. The underlying concepts of the piece, revealed in form, proportions, meters (every movement is partially or entirely in 11), colors, sequence, and symmetry, are a direct interpretation of the pengider buana, the "turning of the universe."

The work is a cross-cultural endeavor. Mikrokosma utilizes musical techniques and concepts that fuse or juxtapose Balinese and Western new-music traditions, particularly American minimalist music and its many offshoots. One of these fusions takes place in the realm of timbre and tuning. The instruments were conceived, constructed, and tuned by Baumbusch. Although he started from a Balinese conception in shaping the basic scale, recent research on the inharmonic partials (overtones) of metal keys and gong chimes informed the fine-tuning process, yielding a unique scale and sonic world.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80785

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

John King: Free Palestine

John King: Free Palestine


John King: Free Palestine

I. Sultani Yakah - Ijlil al-Qibliyya

II. Bayati Shuri - Al-Sarafand

III. Nahawand Murassah - Sabbarin

IV. Humayun - Nuris

V. Hijaz Kar Kurd Nahawand - Gaza

VI. Athar Kurd - Deir Yassin

VII. Hijaz Kar Kurd - Tulkarm

VIII. Nawa Athar Nahawand - Al-Quds

IX. Ushaq Masri - Umm Khalid

X. Nikriz - Qamun

XI. Athar Kurd Hijaz - Rafah

XII. Rast - Ma'alul

XIII. Kurd Nahawand - Qalunya

IV. Huzam - Khan Yunis

XV. Hisar Nahawand - Saffuriya


John King

The Secret Quartet

Even before you've heard a single note of Free Palestine by the composer and instrumentalist John King (b. 1953), the work may well have made an impact for its title alone: a seeming reference to one of the more daunting, divisive sociopolitical conditions in modern global history.

For King - who became politically active during his late teenage years in Minneapolis during the Vietnam War era, participating in labor actions and protests, and later wrote music inspired by the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa - the question of Palestine has been an issue of particular interest. It follows, then, that Free Palestine, a unified sequence of relatively brief string quartet pieces composed from May 2013 to August 2014, is to some extent politically motivated.

Released or re-released in last 6 months

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80786

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Barney Childs: Heaven to Clear When Day Did Close

Barney Childs: Heaven to Clear When Day Did Close


Childs, Barney:

Heaven to Clear When Day Did Close

Sonata for Solo Clarinet

Stances for Flute and Silence

Real Music

37 Songs

Music for Contrabass and Friend

Music for Bass Drum

Any Five


David Ward-Steinman, Phillip Rehfeldt, Nancy Turetzky, Scott Vance, BertramTuretzky, Blake Van Vliet, Chris Corman, Ron George, Bertram Turetzky

Barney Childs (1926 - 2000) is perhaps best known for his innovative scores that weave indeterminacy and improvisation with traditional musical structures and notations. Eclectic in nature, Childs's compositions freely explored diverse avenues of musical thought and drew inspiration from many sources, including traditional western concert music (especially that of such composers as Hindemith, Ives, Ruggles, and Copland), the open form works of John Cage, and jazz of all periods and styles.

Childs's compositions usually have wonderfully idiosyncratic aspects to them, rather than following the dictates of either a system or an established style. He said that "to make music I make choices, as we all do, but I'm unable to presume that music must prove a doctrine, and I cannot accept music merely as process made audible. I choose what will happen simply because it seems to be the right thing to have happen, and in no other way." Thus, the pieces cannot be easily analyzed, and in fact, he dismisses the idea that the value of a work can be or should be determined by whether or not the resulting work is capable of a brilliant analysis.

His pieces consciously play with the listener's expectations, constantly balancing the familiar with the unexpected, so that the listener is "anticipating what is about to happen: the future is defined and qualified, as far as we can define it, by expectation and anticipation, and this is continually being fulfilled or surprised." This is exactly what makes a Childs piece work: the interplay between what is expected and what is not. This recording is a tribute to Childs by some of his close friends, performed and produced as a labour of love.

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80779

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Jon Gibson: Relative Calm

Jon Gibson: Relative Calm


Gibson, J:

Relative Calm (Rise)

Q-Music (Race)

Extensions RC (Reach)

Return (Return)


Jon Gibson (winds, keyboards, autoharp, ambient recording), Joseph Kubera (keyboards) & David Van Tieghem (percussion)

Jon Gibson (b. 1940) is one of the less frequently mentioned pioneering composers of minimal music and is probably best known as a founding member of the Philip Glass Ensemble. Gibson also holds the unique distinction of having performed with Steve Reich, Terry Riley, and La Monte Young (as a member of the Theatre of Eternal Music), in addition to Glass, the four composers widely regarded as the founding fathers of minimal music.

Gibson also has a track record of composing for modern and post-modern dance and Relative Calm (1981) is the fruit of one of his numerous collaborations with well known choreographers, in this case Lucinda Childs, who commissioned the work. The rediscovery of Relative Calm, one of Gibson's major works, is cause for rejoicing among aficionados of minimalist music.

"Gibson stakes out a small but verdant territory more satisfying than the concrete landscapes of many more ambitious minimalist oeuvres." - Kyle Gann

"In Relative Calm, I am very much involved with texture and collage, and it is mainly intuitive. I don't want to be compulsive about the concepts that may inspire a piece. An idea may look wonderful on paper, and may feature an exciting and innovative formula, but the music must sound. Some composers care only about the idea … but I care only about the actual sound of the music." - Jon Gibson

"Some of the harmonies in Gibson's music - its ringing organ tones rising, smearing, melting, tumbling above the piano's hammered rhythms - make me think of fine old hymn tunes, now iced by repetition into components of an intergalactic anthem." - Deborah Jowitt, Village Voice review (1981)

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80783

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Lei Liang: Luminous

Lei Liang: Luminous


Lei Liang:

Verge

Trans

The moon is following us

Inkscape

Luminous


Aleck Karis, Daniel Schlosberg, Mark Dresser

Third Coast Percussion, Formosa Quartet, Palimpsest Ensemble, Steven Schick, Michael Lewanski

The result of a rich confluence of many different cultural threads, a vivid and open imagination, and a rigorous intellect, Lei Liang's (b. 1972) music has a dimensionality to it that's quite remarkable. Of course acoustic, often luxuriantly so, it somehow also evokes tactility, it sounds like something that could be touched. It evokes shape and colour, it sounds like something that could be seen.

There are still other layers of significance, especially language and the drama of narrative action, its great sonic variety possibly conjuring character and scene, emotions and ideas different for each performer and listener. Through myriad avenues of potential perception, Liang's music reaches out and embraces its audience, its intricacies and complexities part and parcel of its naturalness and its direct but highly nuanced communicative voice.

These five compositions represent further explorations of his long-standing research into traditional Asian arts and music and their incorporation into a contemporary music aesthetic. Verge Quartet (2013) is the latest example of Liang's extensive study of Mongolian music. Trans (2013), written for virtuoso percussionist Steven Schick, incorporates audience participation by having them play more than a hundred pairs of rocks, creating a sonic "cloud" that can be interpreted as rain or other natural sounds. The moon is following us (2015) (for solo piano) represents the composer's effort to search for a new harmonic language, based on spectral analysis of a Chinese folk song. Liang imagines the composition as a journey through the spectral landscapes hidden within a voice.

Inkscape (2014) (for percussion quartet and piano), one of several works in which Liang engages with the idea of Chinese traditional mark-making, either that of calligraphy or painting, is an exploration of the relationship between sound and Chinese ink paintings. In this piece, the piano functions as the "brush," and the percussion quartet as the "ink." Luminous (2014) is a concerto written specifically for the innovative bass improviser Mark Dresser. The composer writes, "The instrument's rich spectra embody 'voices' that encompass extreme opposites - lightness and darkness, angels and ghosts, paradise and inferno - unified by a singular vibrating body."

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80784

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days. (Available now to download.)

Hellermann: Three Weeks In Cincinnati In December

Hellermann: Three Weeks In Cincinnati In December


Robert Dick (flute)

"Can you imagine a piece that combines the athleticism of an uphill marathon run on a continuously steepening course with an ethereal, otherworldly sound that takes you out of body? The athleticism in this piece is a non-stop circular breathing run for close to an hour! And what is being circular breathed?

A highly evolved, gorgeous multiphonic world shimmering though a continuous breath tremolo! This incredible duality between the physical and ethereal makes for a musical and emotional experience unlike any other. Before I coalesced my identity as a composer-performer, there was a period in the 1970s when I asked a number of composers to write works for me. Of the solo flute pieces from that time, Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December is by far the most unique and indeed the very best. - Robert Dick

"Three Weeks in Cincinnati in December is the last of four compositions I wrote in the late 70s for solo instruments. They all feature a focus on a specific instrumental technique that was both unusual and difficult. Three Weeks… was exceptional in that it featured three such techniques taking place simultaneously: circular breathing for close to one hour, a continuous diaphragm tremolo, and a succession of beautiful yet very challenging multiphonics.

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80789

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Byron, M: The Celebration

Byron, M: The Celebration


Thomas Buckner (baritone) & Joseph Kubera (piano)

FLUX Quartet

Michael Byron (b. 1953) has long been committed to writing virtuosic instrumental music of contrapuntal complexity and perpetual variation, but with The Celebration, a song cycle for baritone and piano quintet, he ventured into unfamiliar territory: He had not previously composed for voice, the primary vehicle for articulating the wonder of the human condition.

Consisting of four songs (words by Anne Tardos) and two instrumental interludes, The Celebration explores the ambiguity, the disorientation, and ultimately the joyful paradox of formulating an identity in a world of constant change. Like most of Byron's work, the composition is built on a carefully designed structure that ensures the constant and measured transformation of musical elements.

Just as Byron creates a new context for Tardos's poetry, so does the presence of the poetic voice transform Byron's music. The instrumental lines, for example, assume an intensely lyrical guise as they anticipate, echo, mirror, and contrast the vocal line. The unexpected divergence and convergence of the vocal and instrumental lines produce what Byron calls "inevitable synchronicities," that mysterious circumstance of individual voices immersed in eternal dialogue.

With The Celebration, Byron and Tardos provide a rich opportunity for us to acknowledge and celebrate the divine counterpoint between voice and instruments, poetry and music, individual and humanity.

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

New World - NW80787

(CD)

Normally: $16.25

Special: $13.00

Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.

Page: 

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51

 Next >>

Copyright © 2002-17 Presto Classical Limited, all rights reserved.