Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett



Winds from the Baltic
Einar ENGLUND (1928-1999)

Quintet (1989)
Bo NILSSON (b1937)

Déjà connu, déjà entendu (1975-76)
Peter RASMUSSEN (1838-1913)

Quintet (1896)
Villem KAPP (1913-1964)

Suite (1957)
Visby Blåsare – Elisabet Green (flute), David Nisbel (oboe), Per Kinneryd (clarinet), Göran Gustavsson (horn) Zbigniew Jakubowski (bassoon)
Recorded September 1990 in Studio 3 Swedish Broadcasting Corp, Stockholm
PROPRIUS PRCD 9024 [56.29]

Four Nordic wind quintets make entertaining discmates on this Proprius disc that ranges from Rasmussen’s late Romanticism to Nilsson’s 1976 reworking of two earlier works, Déjà connu from 1967 and Déjà entendu from 1976 – here conjoined as one. Rasmussen’s 1896 work follows classical procedure with a slow introduction before leading on to a jaunty little allegro. It’s all rather string based in conception – one can easily imagine it in the form of, say, a chamber orchestra; which means I suppose that there’s nothing overwhelmingly distinctive about it in this medium. For all that it has an attractive slow movement and an involving fugal finale that zips along. Kapp’s 1957 Suite – in four movements – has a vocalised and folk-based expressivity that is immediately appealing. By turns wistful and light hearted there’s a slightly jazzy feel to the scherzo second movement and a bold little march to finish things off.

Bo Nilsson’s work opens with an Introduction that encapsulates a timeless Renaissance feel. There’s simplicity, harmonically speaking, but also a noble lyricism rooted in something much older – something akin to some of Václav Trojan’s film music; Prince Bayaya (1950) for example. He also cultivates mountain air expanses, open spaced without excluded more obviously introspective contrastive sections – the Intermède is a fine example of this skill. The so-called Kontakia finale is a sort of moto perpetuo affair that sports a fast fade ending (Nilsson apparently sanctions electronic help here; I assume it’s the fade out ending in this movement). We’re left with the delicious feeling of things still going on. Finally the most recent work, Englund’s 1989 Quintet. This opens with hymnal piety before the music develops an oscillatory, punctuated feel – jutting horn, especially. There’s a perky scherzo with folkish gestures, earthy and humorous, very nicely voiced with a particularly guttural horn part and high lying flute. The Andante is rather unsettled and short-winded but it slowly gathers direction until the hymnal atmosphere reappears. It’s a fine work; ambiguous enough to sustain interst and splendidly laid out.

The Rasmussen has most recently been recorded on Chandos CHAN 9849 by the Reykjavik Quintet but this Proprius is a fine reading by a talented group. Notes are succinct, sound quality fine. A Nordic conspectus of breadth then; some longeurs but generally entertainingly various.

Jonathan Woolf

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