In a language carrying
the stigmata of Jon Leifs, Messiaen's Turangalila and
the later Panufnik Tüür's Magma is part-symphony and
part-Concerto. There’s often jazzy syncopation to add to the
palette. The work’s bearing and trajectory make it more symphony
than concerto with the display almost always called for by the
exigencies of the format. There are however moments when display
seems in the ascendancy - for example at 16:00 onwards where
the athletically active Glennie can almost be seen running full
tilt from one instrument to another. It's an imposing work inhabiting
a sound-world consonant with the primal molten material to which
its title refers. The work ends in a malcontented jangling haze
of sound punctuated by scamper and crash and then by a fade
Inquiétude du fini is distinguished by string and choral ululations and
by a slalom sway recalling Penderecki and Hovhaness. The choral
writing which is wonderfully done feels Gallic rather than archetypically
Scandinavian. At times the more rhythmic material is redolent
of Tippett (11:30). The earliest work here, this piece is notably
more indebted to Schoenbergian dissonance than Magma.
Igavik is a portrait of the Estonian statesman and friend of
the composer Lennart Meri. It was written for his funeral service
and is intended to convey a short description of Meri's life.
The music manages to be dark and yet to glitter with light and
a sort of heroic awe.
The Path and the
Traces was written
during a family holiday in Crete. It's a work of quiet and
disquiet, prompted by the experience of hearing Greek Orthodox
plainchant, by the music of Arvo Part and by the death of Tüür's
father. It's universe is ultimately confiding and consoling
– a still small voice lapping and murmuring.
The notes are by Martin
Anderson of Toccata fame and show respect and understanding.
The recording is extremely well done.
Exceptional and patently
sincere new music only failing to convince this listener in
the display sections of the symphony.