DAVID LUMSDAINE (b.1931): A Little Cantata "Tracey Chadwell in memoriam" for Soprano, Recorder and Piano, Blue upon Blue for Cello, 6 Postcard Pieces for Piano, A tree telling of Orpheus for Soprano and Ensemble, Metamorphosis at Mullet Creek for Recorder, A Norfolk Songbook for Soprano and Recorder, Cambewarra for Piano.
Catalogue Number: 09N063
Reference: msv 58519
Description: Five of Lumsdaine's Soundscapes - field recordings of natural sounds of birds, frogs and so on, carefully assembled and edited to concentrate their essential 'musical' nature - provide atmospheric punctuation and context to this recital. The two substantial vocal works - A tree telling (setting a poem by Denise Levertov) with ensemble, and Norfolk Songbook (setting his own texts), a vocal duet with with recorder, are conceived in an idiom of free-ranging modality, with Lumsdaine's characteristic leaping, buoyant melodic lines adding vitality and somewhat disguising the music's harmonic structure, lending it an impressionistic ambiguity. Wind instruments especially are written for with microtonal inflections and 'bent' notes - very clearly related to the birdsong inspirations of the soundscapes, and in some cases evoking or imitating them. Modality and birdsong are also present in the large piano work Cambewarra, a colorful evocation of the Australian landscape, very free in form and suggesting a particularly organic form of impressionism, on in which pure, vibrant color and shape predominate over conventional musical form. The piano miniatures and Little (at less than four minutes) Cantata are more conventional, while the solo cello and recorder works explore the composer's taste for more unfocused pitch material. 2 CDs. Texts included. Lesley-Jane Rogers (soprano), Peter Lawson (piano), John Turner (recorder), Jonathan Price (cello), Gemini; Martyn Brabbins.