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Hanns EISLER (1898-1962)
Lieder - Volume 4
Songs 1917-1962
Holger Falk (baritone)
Steffen Schleiermacher (piano)
Andreas Seidel (violin)
rec. 2019, Konzerthaus der Abtei Marienmünster, Germany
MDG 613 2126-2 [69:28]

We now arrive at the fourth and sadly the last volume of Holger Falk and Steffen Schleiermacher’s very fine survey of Eisler’s songs for MDG. He composed lieder and songs throughout his life, composing over five hundred in total, indeed some of his earliest compositions were in this genre, and this volume concentrates on his early songs and include some of his earliest of all which were composed whilst recovering from wounds he received whilst serving in the Austro-Hungarian army during World War I. This influenced his early attempts at composing, especially his first songs which has an air of despondence about them, this is especially prevalent in the two songs that make up Dumpfe Trommel und berauschtes Gong of 1917, with Der müde Soldat being particularly bleak, something that continued in Der Tod of the following year.

The disc shows many influences of Eisler’s development as a composer, from romanticism to the atonal teachings of Arnold Schoenberg and his followers. The very first song on this disc Mädele, bind den Geißbock an, once again shows an influence of Gustav Mahler’s songs upon it, whilst in Morgens kommt von Korff, a setting of Christian Morgenstern, seems to be a premonition of Kurt Weill.

The influence of the Second Viennese School is clear in the 1927 cycle Zeitungsausschnitte, with both Alban Berg and Schoenberg coming through strong, especially in Kriegslied eines Kinders and Der Sinnbegriff – Die Sünde. There are many wonderful songs included on this disc and from each of his compositional styles, this only makes me wish for more. They might not have the appeal or popularity of his Hollywooder Liederbuch, which was featured on Volume 3, but the songs presented here still have a lot to recommend them.

Holger Falk and Steffen Schleiermacher seem to have grown into this series, with each volume being better than the last, which is difficult when you appreciate how good the first volume was. Holger Falk shows the full range of colour in his voice as he interprets these songs, he has been impressive throughout the previous three discs, showing great subtlety as well as intensity in his reading and he is truly excellent here. The musicality of Steffen Schleiermacher has been clear from the outset of this series, and once again this is true, he is not just an accompanist, but an integral part, a true partner. Their performance is excellent throughout, as is the recorded sound, which is natural with a pleasing acoustic, they are backed up with wonderfully informative booklet notes by Steffen Schleiermacher, which backs up his pianism with his first-rate research, it is a pity that no translations are presented with the song texts, but they are largely available elsewhere. Sadly, this series has only scratched the surface, just over a quarter of Eisler’s extensive song output being presented on these four volumes, but they do represent an excellent cross-section of the man and his songs. If you have already dipped into this world, you will need no further encouragment to add this to your collection.

Stuart Sillitoe

Mädele, bind den Geißbock an (1918) [0:46]
Dumpfe Trommel und berauschtes Gong (1917)
Der müde Soldat [4:35]
Die rote und die weiße Rose [3:06]
Der Tod (1918)
Durch das Leben hat der Tod [4:34]
Der Tod hat die Menschen müde getrieben [0:55]
Totenopfer (1918) [1:15]
Nachtgruß (1918) [2:59]
Unter Feinden (1918) [2:17]
Die Mausfalle (1918)
Palmström hat nicht Speck im Haus [4:45]
Morgens kommt von Korff [2:34]
Immer wieder nahst Du, Melancholie (1918) [3:28]
Tanzlied der Rosetta (1919) [2:40]
Am Morgen (1920) [1:37]
Im Frühling (1920) [1:24]
Zwei Lieder für Gesang und Klavier (1920)
Bitte an den Hund [0:39]
Rondell [1:05]
Wenn der Tag vorbei (1918) [3:35]
Sechs Lieder op. 2 (1922/25)
So schlafe nun, du Kleine [1:11]
Ach, es ist so dunkel [1:08]
Wenn ich erführe [0:43]
Erhebt euch, Freunde [0:39]
Der Mond wird noch oft [1:01]
Ich habe nie vermeint, mich selber zu kennen [1:06]
Von der Langeweile (1918) [3:16]
Zeitungsausschnitte (1927)
Mariechen [1:39]
Kinderlied aus dem Wedding [0:40]
Liebeslied eines Kleinbürger mädchens – [1:18]
Kriegslied eines Kinders [2:33]
Der Sinnbegriff
– Die Sünde [0:48]
– Mutter und Vater [0:50]
– Der Tod [2:04]
Liebeslied eines Großgrund besitzers – [1:09]
Predigt des Feldkuraten [2:05]
Frühlingsrede an einen Baum [2:17]
Lustige Ecke (1927)
Noblesse oblige [0:42]
Der kleine Kohn [1:18]
Was möchtest du nicht (1927) [0:30]


Hanns EISLER (1898-1962) Lieder Vol. 4 - Holger Falk (baritone) Steffen Schleiermacher (piano) Andreas Seidel (violin) rec. 2019 MDG 613 2126-2 [69:28] [SSi]

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