Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|George Lloyd, BBC Philharmonic Orchestra|
George Lloyd: Charade; Third Symphony
Flower Power and A Symphony
Rodney Gavin Bullock | Winchester, Hampshire Angleterre | 10/17/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you are a child of the 60s like me, 'Charade' will make you smile. George Lloyd subtitled this suite (he does not call it that) 'Scenes from the Sixties'. The pieces are called Student Power, LSD, March-In, Flying Saucers, Pop Song and Party Politics. The music, for me, does not evoke the images suggested by the titles. LSD does not portray any sort of 'trip', good or bad, and there is nothing extra-terrestrial about Flying Saucers, but does sound like a steam locomotive gathering speed at the end. Pop Song does, as Lloyd points out, have a thumping accompaniment and a lot of repetition but in no way does it suggest pop music. Party Politics, rather obviously, juxtaposes pompous and mock-heroic themes interspersed with chattering episodes. The sad thing is the music is rather good but attaching it to the 60s 'programme' makes it sound woefully inappropriate and very old fashioned. One wonders if some familiarity with atonal or serial music might have helped - in the LSD section, for example. Lloyd is not very good at 'nasty' music.The 3rd symphony was written when Lloyd was 19 and is an astonishing work for someone that age - Shostakovich had only managed his 1st by that time. Compared with Lloyd's own 1st, there is a much greater mastery of form and orchestration, while his melodic gift is beginning to flower. It is in one movement, like the 1st and 12th. The Allegro Con Fuoco begins menacingly with staccato outbursts followed by a tense and memorable theme on the strings. Muted brass over Sibelian strings recall the menacing atmosphere. This turbulence continues until the return of the tense theme then some fine atmospheric writing which merges with the Lento. Based on a simple but beautiful melody, this is surely the prototype for the great slow movements Lloyd was to create. Building to a noble climax, it then subsides into the Finale - Energico which begins with brass fanfares. Tunes begin only to stop and be replaced by another, giving the music a disjointed feel. The flow becomes more even as the end approaches and the symphony finishes with a fanfare. This is a fine work but the following 4th symphony would be the first of the greats.The recording is excellent. The BBC Philharmonic, under the composer, gives a fine performance. The musical notes are by George Lloyd. It may be of interest that Lloyd's revival dates from 1977 when his 8th symphony was premiered in a radio broadcast by the BBC Northern Orchestra."