AHO: Quasi una Fantasia (Petri Komlainen, horn). Eplogue (Jussi
Vuorinen, trombone). BACH: Contrapunctus XIV (arr. Aho). Wedding Macrh
March II. Wedding Msic. Ludus Solemnis. In Memoriam. Song of the
Saarikettu, violin. Anna-Kaisa Pippuri, oboe. Jan Lehtola, organ.
"MORE POWER AND IDEAS" - TACET SACD DEMONATION DISK
'REFLECTIONS" Piano music of Andrzei Panufnik and Roxanna
Leading Finnish composer Kalevi Aho (b. 1949) has written some highly effective music. In particular, his big-scale Symphony No. 12, enthusiastically received on this site (REVIEW), and a fine collection of music for oboe (REVIEW). These were SACD issues on BIS, and now we have another multi-channel disk of the composer's music, this time a collection of works for organ composed 1979-2011. Aho admits he doesn't particularly enjoy writing for the organ because of its performance technique and inability to make a innuendo or crescendo, Quasi une Fantasia is actually a concerto for horn and organ written in 2011 for Petri Komulainen, who gave the premiere and is heard on this recording. The music requires a super-virtuoso soloist, and it has one here. Epilogue composed in 1998 is for trombone and organ, and Song of the Earth, another recent work, is for solo violin and oboe. Aho's three pieces for weddings are decidedly unfestive, throughout these and the other works there is a somber mood, and the writing for organ is hardly of the showpiece variety. Performances are surely definitive, and Jan Lehtola's playing on the Main Organ of St. Paul's Church in Helsinki, has been captured with uncommon clarity. The low organ notes will delight audiophiles.
Tacet is a remarkable company! Their concept of surround sound really is surround, an approach I heartily endorse. This site has rev viewed many of their recordings, in particular the Beethoven symphonies (only No. 9 is yet to be released), with the highest praise. Their sound is natural and imaginative, instruments heard from all corners of the listening area, the listener right in the middle. It is a glorious listening experience, and on this new disk you have an opportunity to sample their imaginative approach to recording. We have orchestral and chamber music of Beethoven, piano music of Ravel and Mussorgsky, orchestral and choral music of Bach, and chamber music of Schubert. For each track there is a diagram showing placement of instruments. And there are many tracks of non-musical audio to display true surround sound including a Check his out—for audiophiles it is a remarkable experience!
"REFLECTIONS" is the title of a BIS SACD devoted to piano music of Andrzej Panufnik and his daughter Roxanna played by Clare Hammond. Panufnik (1914-1990), a leading Polish composer of the century, also was important as a conductor (he studied with Felix Weingartner), and played an important part in development of the Warsaw Philharmonic. He composed profusely, his works including 10 symphonies, chamber music, vocal music and for piano some of which is featured on this fine new disk, an appropriate tribute to the centenary of Panufnik's birth. We have his Twelve Miniature Studies, three of his five Hommage à Chopin originally written for soprano and piano here arranged by Roxanna for solo piano (none of them are Chopinesque), the Pentasonata composed in 1984, and Reflections written in 1968.that shows the composer's fascination with mirrors and reflections. Also included are two works by Roxanna, a major composer in her own right: Second Home and Glo, and Modlitwa (Prayer), another song and one of his last works, completed by Roxanne. All of this is intriguing listening, music not heard very often, superbly played by British pianist Clare Hammond, who specializes in contemporary music, and the audio is another example of BIS's superb engineering.
R.E.B. (August 2014)