Wednesday, June 10, 2009

suggestions from my betters

David Lang - The Little Match Girl Passion (streaming from the collection of commissioned pieces on the Carnegie Hall website) via Alex Ross. I love the Internet. I will even concede to it the capital letter it requests in trade for providing all this. Lang wanted to create a secular piece in the spirit of Bach's passions. The results are meditative and only slightly mournful, chilled like the poor girl in the story, and like most of Lang's work that I've heard, clear and refreshing as spring water.

eigth blackbird performing Steve Reich - Double Sextet. Also from the Carnegie Hall commissions page.

Timothy Andres - Shy and Mighty (at his website) also via the same post by Alex Ross, to whom I am so grateful that I will conceded him two capital letters, and a third if he wants to start sporting a smart middle initial like some of us lesser music-talker-abouters do. About Mr. Andres's encyclopedic piece, I am forever astounded by people that make startlingly vast things out of little, here, just two pianos, which I guess isn't little really. Shy and Mighty implies a larger orchestra at work in its tidy mouse-nibble textures in the quiet moments and the clashes of beasts at the watering-hole in the louder parts. I understand that most great art is generally built on a budget, though I've never been all that handy with a checkbook myself.

Michael Harrison - Revelation: Music in Pure Intonation (listen) Michael Harrison is more of a name in the Windham Hill new age scene, but this 2007 album brings him to his polite, austere roots in the otherworldly ether of just intonation.

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