OK, now you're talking!! As modern music continues to drone down some boring atonal alley, and soundtracks lack any kind of personality, along comes the soundtrack for Color Out of Space, an adaptation of a 1927 H.P Lovecraft short story by infamous director Richard Stanley, who was sacked from directing The Island of Dr. Moreau in 1996 - and hasn't directed a film since. There's a lot of buzz around the film which opens this week, but I have found surprisingly little about the masterful score by saxophonist and songwriter Colin Stetson. Now, since I haven't seen the film, it may be possible that this resoundingly produced horror-sci-fi-creep-fest, now out on CD, only adds to the story of a family man whose psyche is subsumed by an extraterrestrial force.
When soundtracks are out to simply jar you, I get bored. This one gets under your skin in a thoroughly enjoyable way. Being a multi-instrumentalist, Stanley shows off his ability to orchestrate, creating a hallucinatory jail that I was glad to be locked in.
READ THE FULL STAGEANDCINEMA REVIEW
Now in its 39th season, the Alexander String Quartet has undergone some personnel changes, but its founding violist, Paul Yarbrough, is still in his lofty place. That will change on May 16, with Yarbrough's final performance as a member of the ASQ, in the Herbst Theater closing of the 2019–2020 San Francisco Performances Saturday Morning Series.
After Yarbrough's retirement, this summer the quartet will welcome his successor, David Samuel, a violist with a long history of working with the ASQ as a guest artist in recording and education projects. Samuel has a prestigious career as a chamber musician, soloist, and orchestral musician. He is currently associate principal violist with the Auckland (NZ) Philharmonia Orchestra, and serves on the faculty of the University of Auckland. Photo Credit: Shirley Singer
READ THE FULL San Francisco Classical Voice ARTICLE
Norwegian composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo has a musical style that is often described as cinematic and evocative, characterised by warm harmonies, flowing melodies and gently rocking, repeated figures. He is an exclusive Decca Classics recording artist, and the new album follows the highly successful Winter Songs (2017) and Ola Gjeilo (2016), which also feature Tenebrae, Voces8 and the Choir of Royal Holloway. NIGHT is his first solo piano album to be released on Decca.
Gjeilo's now presents a stunning collection of brand-new original works for solo piano, composed and performed by Gjeilo himself. NIGHT is an intimate and meditative collection of peaceful piano music, inspired by the twilight hours in the place he now calls home – New York City.
In conjunction with this release Ola has made some time today! Thursday February 28 to speak with US radio.
Game of Tones:
Microtonal Guitarist John Schneider plays the 30th iteration of PITT's Beyond 2020 Microtonal Music Festival.
Despite its modernist ring, microtonal music is not a recent phenomenon. The term was first coined over a century ago, and the concept - music using altered pitches and tuning systems to play notes not found in the standard Western twelve-tone system - has been utilized as far back as history books go. But thanks to the internet, the ease of self-education through YouTube tutorials, and the advancement of musical technology, microtonal music has evolved into an (almost) mainstream field of study and expression.
Founder of MicroFest, John Schneider is a guitarist and arranger who also writes for harp and percussion. A professor of music at Los Angeles Pierce College, Schneider also hosts the KPFK Los Angeles weekly radio program "Global Village."
From Fri., Feb. 28 to Sun., March 1, a slate of local and international groups will explore microtonality from a variety of approaches through a mix of electronic and acoustic instruments, light shows, video projections, and dance, as well as lectures from experts in the field. Performers include Del Sol String Quartet (San Francisco), MikroEnsemble (Finland), Brightwork Ensemble (Los Angeles), and Pittsburgh musicians Aaron Myers-Brooks, Nuiko Wadden, and Lindsey Goodman, and many more.
READ THE FULL PGH City Paper ARTICLE
Rhythm Planet showcases mostly new releases in our playlist this week, together with some rediscoveries and remembrances along the way. On the jazz front, we hear the music of saxophonists Eric Alexander, Wayne Shorter (by Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra), and Brent Jensen; plus pianists Tim Ray, Joey Alexander's "Inner Urge", and Laurence Hobgood's lovely string-quartet version of Glen Campbell's classic song "Witchita Lineman." Vibraphonist Chris Dingman's new album is called Embrace, and we listen to "Inner Child" from it. This week's playlist also includes; Sheku Kanneh-Mason & London Symphony Orchestra / "Blow the Wind Southerly.
READ THE FULL KCRW: Rhythm Planet Article and Playlist for 2/25/20:
Joey Alexander, the Grammy-nominated jazz pianist, composer and bandleader recently unveiled 'Warna' (Verve Records). The album is primarily a collection of reflective, moving new and original music by an experienced and confident musician. Translating as "color" from Alexander's native language of Bahasa, WARNA follows four Motéma Music albums that garnered the pianist three Grammy nominations and such honors as historic critics' and readers' poll victories in DownBeat and JazzTimes. Joining Alexander on the new album are Larry Grenadier and Kendrick Scott, who comprise the core piano trio. On several tracks, Venezuelan-born percussion Luisito Quintero, and flautist Anne Drummond, join the burgeoning jazz pianist.
Joey sits down with 91.3KXCI: Tucson to discuss the recording. Listen to the attached file
The two Piano Concertos by Frederic Chopin recorded here have been an integral part of British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor's repertoire ever since his early teens. And this level of familiarity definitely manifests itself in his playing. There's a constant fluid limpidity and clarity to his phrasing, and an overall forward momentum shaped by delicate contours. Nothing ever sounds forced or affected, but rather seemingly moves along naturally. The slow passages are contemplative whilst the fast passages quite simply dance off the keyboard. And when a certain degree of darkness creeps into the music, his playing takes on an appropriately different mien, and the same can be said when the music takes on a highly Polonaise style.
READ THE FULL Classical Music Sentinel REVIEW
‘Love Letters' marks a different direction for the internationally celebrated artist; it offers a shift in intimacy and content and comes at a pivotal time in her career as she signs to her new record label, Mercury KX.
Milan Records today releases THE NEW POPE (ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK FROM THE SKY – HBO – CANAL+ SERIES produced by FREMANTLE'S THE APARTMENT and WILDSIDE, co-produced with HAUT ET COURT TV and THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO) with music by LELE MARCHITELLI.
Referred to as "the Jimi Hendrix of the ukulele," Jake Shimabukuro is a true virtuoso, and exhibits his talents once again with the release of ‘Trio', available February 14th through Music Theories Recordings.
"I always write accessible music - it's tuneful, accessible and strikes an emotional chord with people, I believe. The Mass for Peace, for example, has been performed almost 2,000 times around the planet. So the music does strike a chord with people, which is very humbling and gratifying from my perspective, really."
That's Welsh composer Karl Jenkins describing the appeal of his music, which you've probably heard in advertising for Levi's, British Airways, Pepsi, Delta Airlines and De Beers to name a few. He's written music for Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Dame Evelyn Glennie and Bryn Terfel, and he's earned 17 gold and platinum disc awards. And that only begins to scratch the surface of a composer who marks not only his 70th birthday this year, but his 50th anniversary as a musician. Numerous celebrations are already underway, including a performance to celebrate Martin Luther King at Carnegie Hall in January, where a new work called "The Healer," will be premiered. Karl Jenkins is also marking this important anniversary with a new recording of uplifting works for a cappella choir titled, Motets. It features some brand new pieces, as well as new arrangements of some of his most popular works.
"And the idea was to strip the music to its bones, really, without any orchestration or accompaniment," Jenkins says. "I usually use a lot of percussion in my works. But it was revisiting some of the most evocative and memorable, to my mind, of my pieces whilst at the same time creating some new pieces. And I was inspired by Stephen Layton and Polyphony, a remarkable vocal group in the U.K. And his interpretation of the music is quite fascinating, really, and beautiful … the sound of it is quite beautiful. So I was thrilled to have him agree to do it"
One piece that really struck me was Laudamus te from Jenkins' "Gloria." The stunning key change is so subtle, as if the sun is rising through the clouds. "It's very beautiful," Jenkins agrees, "E-flat to F. But … he kind of milks it, really, the way Stephen interpreted it, exactly the way I would have dreamt it to be. It is, as you say, subtle. The music goes quiet for a while. Then the chord comes in and then it goes off on the tangent again. I'm glad you liked that part. So do I. It's quite thrilling, really."
In some respects, Jenkins says each of these works are personal favorites, though he does have a soft spot for the three new pieces written specifically for this release, "Ah, yes. Nunc dimitis, the last one on the recording. There's another one - Locus Iste … like, 'here lives God,' locus iste, which Bruckner set for his text with the same name. And there's hymn from Adiemus which is the Ave Maria text, which fits it like a glove, really. And there's another one - a William Blake poem, I think, which was The Shepherd. An ancient text - not ancient but old &helllip; so there are four, I think … there are three completely new works: The Shepherd, Locus Iste and Nunc Dimitis."
In addition to giving familiar works new text, and writing three completely new pieces, Karl Jenkins stretched himself even further by producing this recording in what was, for him, a completely new way. "I usually work in a conventional modern recording studio," Jenkins explains. "I've always produced pretty much like the way a pop recording is made … with a sound bed or a bass … over which is overlaid the orchestra and the choir. Which gives me control over each element. This was different - done in a dated way, I suppose … or a classical way … in which it's all done at once in a church. A slightly new experience for me - we did it in three days. And because it was done in a church, there were some issues as one gets with extraneous sound from traffic, aircraft or whatever. So the recording was interrupted a couple of times because of extraneous noises. But the sound within the natural acoustic was phenomenal."
Recording in All Hallows' Church in Hampstead, North London, was a memorable experience for Karl Jenkins, and one he shares with you as he marks his 50th anniversary season with these strikingly beautiful Motets.
Sir Karl Jenkins presents Symphonic Adiemus, the new album of epic proportions. Brand new recordings of the greatest moments from the Adiemus series features an extended orchestra of over 100, including over 20 layers of classical and ethnic percussion, and a choir of 80. With judicious use of multi-tracking, there are sometimes over 400 participants heard at any one time.
SYND: C24, CBC Direct: MOOD Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Detroit, Minneapolis, Austin, SC(Statewide), AL(Statewide), MI(Statewide), Barcelona INTER: Canada, Spain Online: Passion Musique et Culture, Musicas Imaginadas
In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Aberfan disaster in Wales, Sir Karl Jenkins has composed a major new choral work, Cantata Memoria – For The Children,to be released on a Deutsche Grammophon album on 7th October and premiered at the Wales Millennium Centre the following day. The concert will feature some of Wales' most celebrated artists including Bryn Terfel, Catrin Finch, Elin Manahan Thomas, David Childs, as well as contributions from Michael Sheen and Siân Phillips. Cantata Memoria was commissioned by S4C, the Welsh language TV channel, to mark 50 years since the Aberfan disaster, when 116 children and 28 adults lost their lives after a colliery waste tip collapsed and engulfed Pantglas school and nearby houses, devastating the local community in South Wales.
SYND: PRI/C24 & Echoes, CBC, Classic fm Direct: MOOD Markets include: New York, San Francisco, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Houston, El Paso, Rochester NY, KS(Network) INTER: Canada, UK, Netherlands, Romania Online: AccuRadio
Welsh-born Karl Jenkins, who has been called: "the most popular living composer", writes music that speaks to audiences across the world. Following the huge success of:Adiemus, Jenkins brings you: The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace on EMI Classics. In a manner reminiscent of Britten's War Requiem, "The Armed Man" interpolates a number of different texts within the usual Mass form. Malory, Dryden, Swift, Tennyson, Kipling, The Koran and the Hindu Mah bhar ta contribute to a compelling account of the descent into and terrible consequences of war.
3 New "ON" this week: 46 Total Stations
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Welsh-born Karl Jenkins, who has been called "the most popular living composer", writes music that speaks to audiences across the world. Following the huge success of Adiemus, Jenkins has now completed his new piece Requiem, which is being released on EMI Classics.
1 new Stations"ON" 53 Total Stations
Syndicated: CPRN, Music Choice Markets include: Los Angeles, Atlanta, Seattle, Denver, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Cincinatti, Kansas City, Tampa, New Orleans, Buffalo, Honolulu, Columbus OH, Tempe AZ