|All Artists: Scelsi, Zender|
Title: Scelsi, Zender: Orchestral Works
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Cpo Records
Release Date: 4/1/2000
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Scelsi, Zender: Orchestral Works
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Good price but little else
Anonymous reviewer | NY State United States | 02/21/2000
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Despite the bargain price, this recording can't be recommended to Scelsi fans. The performance of "Quattro Pezzi" is not as good as the one directed by Wyttenbach on Accord. And the pieces composed by Zender are not particularly distinguished."
katja_r | 09/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I enjoy this CD very much. Scelsi is one of my favourite composers of this century. Track 1 is a performance of Scelsi's Four pieces for Orchestra. The notes are extremely informative explaining the impetus for these pieces. Scelsi had become worn with serialism, so, as a "therapy" he concentrates on one and only one tone per piece. The results are surprising and much more exciting than I had formerly thought a "one-note" orchestral work could be. The vocal piece is powerfully executed by Michiko Hirayama on PRANUM. This is my first exposure to the music of Hans Zender. Five Haiku for Flute and strings (Lo-Shu IV) is an interesting attempt to translate the Japanese poetric form with its constrained structure to the medium of sound. Roswitha Staege performs well through some challenging passages. This piece moves with fits and abrupt stops, making the timing between the musicians a demanding task. The notes summarily explain that in ZEITSTROME "four different sound layers (woodwinds, brass instruments, strings and four xylophones) form the point of departure for this orchestral work. They engage in increasing interpenetration and end up merging together." Hans Zender fills in the blanks a bit with his explanation. It is a complex and interesting piece. The strings create a lumbering rhythm while the woodwinds, brass and xylophone dance about frenetically. The pieces by Zender are interesting, even so, Giacinto Scelsi deservedly receives top billing. If you are interested in the music of Giacinto Scelsi & Hans Zender, or in music composed in the late twentieth century which challenges the serial system, this music will interest you."
More Scelsi - Less Zender
Christopher Forbes | Brooklyn,, NY | 07/30/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I find this CD to be a mixed bag. There was competition for both of the Scelsi pieces recorded here. Wyttenbach recorded an excellent rendition of the Quatro Pezzi for Accord and I believe that there is another recording of Pranam on Mode. However, the Accord CD is out of print and the Mode CD is hard to find now. So this is probably the most readily available recording of these works. The Quatro Pezzi performances are good, though not as good as Wyttenbach's, and Pranam is with nearly the same ensemble as the Mode CD. The pieces by Scelsi are masterworks. The Quatro Pezzi are watershed orchestral works for Scelsi. In an attempt to go beyond the dead end of serialism Scelsi began to concentrate on music based on single tone. At first this was accomplished by a series of piano pieces that obsessively repeat single tones, decorated by clusters. But soon Scelsi realized that his interest lay more in microtonal variations on these tones. This lead to several important string pieces and the Quatro Pezzi. Scelsi's music here is at it's most obsessive. The single tones for the most part don't waver by more than a semi-tone. Interested is created by subtle orchestration and the use of the technique of added resonance (clusters of chords above and below the tone that reinforce different elements of the harmonic series, creating more of a "sound" than a "harmony".) The resulting music predated Ligeti's sound experiments by about 5 years. These are important pieces, and worth hearing, so for the Quatro Pezzi alone, I would totally recommend this CD. Pranam is an added bonus. It was written for an ensemble with Michiko Hirayama as soprano soloist. The vocal techniques are created around her unique vocal capabilities. The effect of the work is like a ritual or shamanic ceremony. The Zender pieces are not bad, but I wish that we could have had more orchestral Scelsi instead. Since the Accord discs went out of print, there has been precious little orchestral Scelsi available. (The chamber music on the other hand has proliferated beyond control!) I would love another recording of Phat or Aion and there are several pieces in the canon that haven't seen the light of day yet. I would have appreciated this CD more if some of those had been included. Let Zender create CDs of his own music separately."