Classical Editor: Rob Barnett                               Music Webmaster Len Mullenger:


Other Echoes (1999)
Triple Clarinet Concerto (1991)
Pendulums of Blue (1999)
Noah's Ark (1991)
Auckland Philharmonia/Nicolas Braithwaite (Echoes); John Hopkins (Concerto)
NZSO/Matthias Bamert (Pendulums);
Ensemble Philharmonia/John Elmsly (Noah's Ark)
ATOLL ACD300 [58.50]

The CD leaflets from Atoll are not too good at providing you with information. Their design is to the highest standards but go looking for some biographical information about the composer and you look in vain.

Other Echoes is a work of flighty modernism, Ariel careering around the skies with hints of Pettersson, Messiaen, Rautavaara (those arctic birds are very familiar) and Turnage. The hints of unabashed modernism and fragmented lyricism spread their wings wide in the texture-clear and incident-rich six movement clarinet concerto. Such is the style that it would pair happily with the Thea Musgrave Concerto and with Harrison Birtwistle. Castro Robinson is no neo-romantic, that is for sure, and the evidence for this is clear also from Pendulums of Blue and Noah's Ark with the latter's bird calls (familiar from Other Echoes), elephant trumpetings, gall-bitter humour, lumbering tramp and parody (how many of the quotes can you recognise?). Well recorded and enterprising stuff.

Rob Barnett

In case of difficulty available from
Atoll ltd, PO Box 99039, Newmarket, Auckland, New Zealand.

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