Morris, C.: Chamber Music For Our Times
Wu, Tien-Hsin Cindy; Yang, Ji-In; Lin, Wei-Yang Andy; Chen, Han; Chen, Nan-Cheng; Silberger, Eric
New from Navona Records and Craig Morris comes CHAMBER MUSIC FOR OUR TIMES, a stirring album of original chamber works. MUSIC FOR OUR TIMES is the work of a master craftsman with an ear for poignant lyricism. The album features four pieces, each of which exhaustively explores the colors and timbres available to the chamber ensembles. Critics have called Morris’s music “extremely intelligent, complex and powerful,” and CHAMBER MUSIC FOR OUR TIMES is further evidence of that. It opens with Romance, for Violin and Piano, which finds the violin and piano in one of the most deeply-intimate musical settings imaginable. The delicate interplay between these two instruments suggests both the tenderness and the passion of a budding courtship as it develops from one moment to the next. This is followed by Colors, a piece for string quartet that delves into the rich timbral contrasts that define this centuries-old musical form. The second portion of CHAMBER MUSIC FOR OUR TIMES’s program consists of a pair of piano quartets. Johnny and Tony, in particular, is a masterful homage to the chamber music of Brahms and Dvorak, and further reveals Morris’s skill for counterpoint and melody. Moods, the second piano quartet and concluding piece on the album, offers an upbeat and lighthearted finale to the collection. CHAMBER MUSIC FOR OUR TIMES is the result of Morris’s lifetime of study and practice of the art of composition. His work reveals his profound love and commitment to 19th-century Romantic music; and yet, this background serves merely as a launchpad for his own compositions. Far from derivative, Morris uses his deep understanding of the idiom to create novel and captivating works—works that lovers of tonal chamber music are sure to find at once familiar and refreshing.