New Chamber Works (live)

Album cover art for upc 5023363304122
Label: NMC Recordings
Catalog: NMCD239
Format: COMPACT DISC

Daniel, Nicholas; Brabbins, Martyn; Nash Ensemble; Aurora Orchestra; Britten Sinfonia

Three influential and varied British composers across three generations have been paired with three leading British ensembles on this album of new chamber works, commissioned as part of The Radcliffe Trust's Tercentenary and recorded live at Wigmore Hall, London. Composer Anna Meredith is a composer, producer and performer of both acoustic and electronic music. Her sound is frequently described as ‘uncategorizable’ and ‘genre-defying’ and her music has been performed everywhere from the BBC Last Night of the Proms to rock and pop festivals. Tripotage Minatures is, as the title suggests, about messing about with things (Anna says ‘jiggery pokery’ is her favorite translation of the French term). Sounds change and stutter and tonal colors drain and become murky. Instruments interrupt and sound like they are trying to trip one another up. Postludes by Colin Matthews is dedicated to his good friend, the composer Oliver Knussen, who died whilst the piece was being written in 2018. Matthews’ says he had Knussen’s Cantata for oboe quartet in his mind from the start, and this piece – written for oboe quartet plus string quartet - has a poignant, elegiac feel and the atmosphere of after-event with which the title accords. Alexander Goehr’s after The Waking is named after a poem by Theodore Roethke, which the composer has previously set to music for two voices. This quintet, performed by the Nash Ensemble, is a fantasia in five movements on material that Goehr explains ‘wouldn’t let me go’ from the earlier work.

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