Album cover art for upc 773811308220
Label: CEN
Catalog: CMCCD 30822

Staniland, Andrew; Brennan, Bill; Gendron, Étienne; Power, Rob; Lilly, Steve

KALEIDOSCOPE: the new album by Canadian composer Bill Brennan is a collection of original music written for mallet instruments, primarily the marimba and vibraphone. Brennan’s compositions draw from his musical life as a performer of contemporary new music and jazz, and from his experiences with the music of other cultures. In his liner notes Brennan writes: “I want to acknowledge the music of Ghana, Brazil, Indonesia and India. I have been fortunate to have great teachers and mentors from these countries, and my musical life has been immensely enriched because of them and their music.” In its appreciation for layers of space and patterns, Brennan’s work also harkens to his own province of Newfoundland and Labrador, woven together to create fine fabrics of sonic tapestries. The sound microcosms that Brennan creates are established within a landscape of rhythmic complexity, bold melodic language, flexibility of musical style, and harmonic elegance. The composition Shadows, for example, is like a musical mobile, turning and spinning with slight but constant changes in color. In Kaleidoscope Brennan explores subtle changes of chordal textures, with influences of Brazilian samba music and Stravinsky’s The Firebird. Other pieces, such as Au revoir Les Enfants and Belo Horizonte, are inspired by space and place, reminiscent of Paris and the joyous reflection of early morning sounds in the central park of Belo Horizonte, Brazil. The captivating, virtuoso performances by Brennan and his musical collaborators ROB POWER and ETIENNE GENDRON are rich with a beauty, sensitivity and integrity that is singular to this album.

Price: $26.98