Mills: Mosaics, Vol. 3

Album cover art for upc 5016198432528
Catalog: CC4325-2

Dupré, Tom; Vishnick, Martin; Blackshaw, Ellie; Winquist, Robert; Edwards, Philip; Deeks, Stuart; Jones, Huw; Collingridge, Caroline; Hyde-Smith, Christopher; Pluygers, Catherine; Phillips, Stephen; Woodhouse, Nigel; Stuart-Pennink, Sarah; Dodd, Jane; Munro, Charlotte; Hand, Richard; Sienkiewicz, Henryk

Barry Mills writes: I feel that Mosaics is a very appropriate title for this album, since the shape and texture of much of the music here has a mosaic-like quality. Often, musical form is quite hard to define as this arises out of a rather free juxtaposition of different musical materials in such a way that the desired “musical picture” is achieved. The Wind Quintet opens with a long melody, which moves from one unaccompanied instrument to another. This highlights the different sound color of each instrument and this desire to bring out the five contrasting timbres governs the way in which the music unfolds. The String Quartet (1985) has a very free form and for me is full of water images. Listening to it now the Clarinet Quintet has a strong Webern influence in places, not too much so, I hope. It divides into six quite clear sections. Flute Sketches is in three sections, the first tentative and spacious, the second brighter and more mobile, the third darker in mood. Mosaic for flute and piano is in four sections: 1: A theme on unaccompanied flute, followed by two variations. 2: A fast section dominated by overlapping trills in the two instruments 3: A slow section developing the theme and variations. 4: A musical “flashback” drawing on all the music which has been heard. The Duo for Flute and Violin is hard to define structurally, simply attending to the constantly changing relationship between the two instruments is the best way to get a sense of the shape of the piece. Ocean for Double Bass has a rondo form: A1 B A2 B A3 B A4. A pattern of harmonics is repeated unchanged for each B section, whilst the A sections vary considerably in content, the musical idea of a repeated pitch is important here. The last two pieces are hard to define structurally, but I hope that the interplay of the instruments will evoke pictures and atmospheres from nature, which is the intention of most of the music here.

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