Zoltan KODALY Sonata for Solo Cello
George CRUMB Sonata for Solo Cello
Jonathan HARVEY Curve with Plateaux
Magnus LINDBERG Stroke
Panu Luosto (cello)
rec Helsinki, 1997
ALBA ABCD 135
Luosto (born 1971) is a name unknown to me and perhaps to many others. Here
he shows himself to be a player of great technical power and emotional resource.
He gives the impression of being swept (and sweeping) along by the molten
flow of Kodaly's masterwork. This work (scorchingly recorded by the great
Janos Starker on Saga) is perhaps Kodaly's finest work. The music shouts
and shakes with rage and remorse. This is a powerhouse of a performance recorded
with restless confidence. Would that Luosto had encountered one of Arnold
Bax's least known scores, the Rhapsodic Ballad (a work from the 1930s) also
for solo cello. There was space for it here. Contrary to fear (expectation)
the Crumb Sonata is not at all a modernist piece. Early in provenance it
can be grouped with the Symphony and the Pocahontas Suite. It is at heart
close to the Kodaly. Harvey's work is self-evidently passionate and has a
theme of decidedly Irish contour and sentiment. It is likely to yield rewards
over repeated hearings. Lindberg's work rasps, grunts, birdwhistles in the
highest harmonics, grumbles and shudders in line with avant-garde tracks.
I found it totally dense and opaque. The problem is my lack of understanding
although the gypsying and grating at 06.02 is an access point. We will leave
If you are in the market for a single CD of solo cello music this could easily
be your 'man'. Luosto's name is one we will hear more of. Now let's hear
Luosto in the John Foulds cello concerto with fellow countryman Oramo Sakari.
A desirable disc though undermined by short playing time.