„ … Zwei Gefühle …“ and Solo Works
1. „…Zwei Gefühle – Musik mit Leonardo …“ (1992) 21:38
2. Weigenmusik (1963) for piano solo 3:25
3. Pression (1969-70) 9:08
4. Guero (1970) for piano solo 3:57
Ein Kinderspiel (1980) for piano solo 14:31
Helmut Lachenmann, piano
Violin and viola players whisper over their instruments. A guitarist waits with the closest attention for the moment to make a gesture we might easily have missed. The tuba player rises to go over to the open piano, there to send sounds echoing into its interior. Two cellists, bowing with heavy pressure down near the tailpiece, produce an urgent rasping. From the timpanist comes the sudden fortissimo that seems to shock the music to a standstill...
Renowned German composer Helmut Lachenmann’s music is expressive in extraordinary ways, requiring the performers to play their instruments via unusual techniques, making for both compelling listening and viewing.
Lachenmann performs in and supervises these recordings with Ensemble Signal, one of America’s leading New Music ensembles. In addition to performing as narrator in „…Zwei Gefühle …“. Lachemann also is the soloist for three of his piano works.
These studio recordings followed an intensive four concert tour of this program. Lachenmann taught each musician of Ensemble Signal individually on his language of techniques for this project.
Liner notes by Paul Griffiths.
The DVD includes a 20 minute documentary of Lachenmann in conversation with Seth Brodsky (Assistant Professor of Music at The University of Chicago), filmed at New York’s Miller Theatre.
First in a series of Lachenmann on Mode Records.
“The audience whooped and cheered after every work.” – Anthony Tommasini, The New York Times, reviewing the Miller Theatre concert.
Brian Brandt’s mode CD 252, issued in 2012, joins my Helmut Lachenmann collection as among the best. The work that sets the disc apart is a performance of „…Zwei Gefühle…“, Music mit Leonardo, for speaker and ensemble. The composer recites Leonardo’s words, often fractured and as whispered noises. The New York-based Ensemble Signal, Brad Lubman conducting, turns in a rather more vivid (and vividly recorded) performance than the same work and speaker on a 1991 Kairos CD (0012202KAI). In terms of recording and Lachenmann’s requirements, his particulate sounds call for a sense of space and detail this mode CD provides in abundance. To perform Lachenmann well musicians must be willing to abandon precepts and training. With either disc, we’re fortunate to have a major 20th-century work with its composer as principal performer. I would think it, in this regard, difficult to surpass, with my preference, as mentioned, going to the mode, which includes Weigenmusik, Ein Kinderspiel and Guero, all for piano, and Pression, for much-belabored cellist, cello and listener.
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