GEORGE BENJAMIN (b.1960): Shadowlines (6 Canonic Preludes), MAGNUS LINDBERG (b.1958): Piano Jubilees, PHILIP CASHIAN (b.1963): 6 Pieces after Paintings by Ben Hartley, GEORGE KING (b. around 1978): 6 Piano Etudes.

Catalogue Number: 11P081

Label: Odradek

Reference: ODRCD308

Format: CD

Price: $17.98

Description: Lindberg's Jubilees are effectively etudes in all but name; the composer is a pianist of formidable abilities, and each of these pieces explores a different kind of virtuosity. The set traces an arc as it progresses, with diminishing density of texture and more open, tonal harmony. Cashian's brief pieces are based on six of British artist Ben Hartley's colorful, humorous, whimsical pictures. Coloristic harmonies recalling now Messiaen, now Debussy, now Scriabin, coupled with a bold, improvisational style, match the exuberance of the pictures. Benjamin's Canonic Preludes are intricately contrapuntal. They abound in abrupt contrasts and luminous, non-functional, precisely delineated harmony. The last three are noticeably more expressively varied than the first, especially the fifth, a wide-ranging character piece, dedicated to Oliver Knussen. King's own etudes encapsulate aspects of the composer-pianist's compendium of pianistic technique in an idiom based in tonality with more than a trace of Messiaen's harmonies, especially in the exultant first etude, deliberately treating the piano in an advanced yet traditional manner. George King (piano).


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