ERIC CRAVEN (b.196?): Pieces for Pianists, Vol. 2 : Nos. 26 - 50.

Catalogue Number: 10X066

Label: Metier

Reference: msv 28602

Format: CD

Price: $18.98

Description: Volume 2 joins 02W075 from February to complete Craven's cycle of 50 short "non-prescriptive" collaborative pieces for piano. Expression markings, titles, programmatic associations, and the like are omitted entirely, as are various other parameters aside from pitch - so rhythm, duration of notes, dynamics, pedalling etc. may be entirely at the discretion of the performer, who must therefore be willing and able to "play the game" and exercise their own creative powers in order to realize the pieces effectively. Dullea is an ideal collaborator, rendering the works entirely convincingly; so much is left to the pianist (to see how much, you can buy the scores for $50 per volume from Divine Art) that it would be very instructive to hear how a completely different pianist would interpret the scores without reference to this recording. For the listener to these discs, not much needs to be added to what we said of Vol.1: "Knowing nothing of the background to these works, the listener would hear them as an attractive set of short pieces with something of the character of studies, not by any means approaching transcendental levels of virtuosity in the manner of innumerable cycles of concert Études since Chopin, broadly tonal in harmony but not following any sequence of key centres. Their apparent simplicity puts them somewhat in the general area of Howard Skempton. … The composer most frequently likely to be evoked for comparison is probably Debussy, due to Craven's choice of consonant harmony that avoids functional triadic progressions, which also allies the pieces to jazz." Mary Dullea (piano).


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