HK GRUBER (b.1943): Busking for Trumpet, Accordion, Banjo and String Orchestra, Nebelsteinmusik for Violin and Strings (Violin Concerto No. 2), Violin Concerto No. 1.
Catalogue Number: 02M089
Description: The unusual Busking is grounded in an obvious affection for, and thorough knowledge of, musical trends of about a century ago - late romanticism, second-Viennese innovation, cabaret and emerging popular trends and modernism. Gruber blends these disparate elements into a cohesive idiom that manages to be sophisticated and thoroughly approachable, with an element of dark, satirical humor that Weill would have been proud of. Taking its cue from Picasso's 'Three Musicians' this virtuoso vehicle, written for Hardenberger, adds the 'popular', street-musician sounds of banjo and accordion to the string orchestra, instantly conjuring associations and vivid imagery. Nebelsteinmusik sets up from the start tension between a Bergian tone-row and a tonal musical monogram based on the name of Gruber's teacher, von Einem. The essentially lyrical, broadly tonal work has a lively first movement, a songful, unsentimentally affectionate slow movement, an extended, eloquent accompanied cadenza and a energetic finale, the whole tinged with jazz rhythms and references to various works by von Einem. The first concerto combines Mahlerian romanticism and unabashed melodiousness, as the theme of a song by the composer gradually emerges as the underlying basis of an increasingly complex, multifaceted series of 15 sections of diverse character. Katarina Andreasson (violin), Håkan Hardenberger (trumpet), Mats Bergström (banjo), Claudia Buder (accordion), Swedish Chamber Orchestra; HK Gruber.