northernechologo

Rinaldo Zhok’s Liszt-Verdi CD reviewed in the Northern Echo

Gavin Engelbrecht of the Northern Echo reviewed Rinaldo Zhok’s Liszt-Verdi CD.

He keeps it short, though: “An auspicious beginning”

 

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Rinaldo Zhok’s Liszt-Verdi CD reviewed by Voix des Arts

Joseph Newsome of Voix des Arts wrote a raving review of Rinaldo Zhok’s Liszt-Verdi CD. Read it here.

“The emotion of the music passes from the soul of Verdi, through the mind of Liszt, to the hands of Mr. Zhok.”

“This is a special disc, and the performances on it declare that Rinaldo Zhok is a special pianist.”

We are very happy for Rinaldo and think the praise is well deserved!

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RITMO reviews five Odradek CDs / Part V

The Spanish classical music magazine RITMO reviewed five of Odradek Records CD’s in it’s march edition. Last, but not least, Mariann Marczi’s CD Splinters is reviewed. As a bonus, the last bit of Pina Napolitano’s Schoenberg CD review.

“Marczi has chosen wisely and carefully a repertory of (…) the music for piano of her compatriots. A lesson that teaches us (…) that Hungary was and remains an indispensable reference in music.”

 

One more time in English:

 

Mariann Marczi brings a unique tribute to the great contemporary musicians of her country: the history of music -of Hungary- full of talent and that of the beginning of the twentieth century that gave a new turn thanks to the encounter between Bartok and Kodaly. Rescuing the folk music from the service of the contemporaneity it marries modernity and tradition with exquisite and significant results. Kodaly combines the pentatonic scales with that of the whole-tone: a double homage to the French and Hungarian folk music. The metallic Study of Ligeti, with brilliant sonorities and complex rhythmic frameworks in both hands,

denotes the influence of the percussion and piano of Bartok, proof of the enormous mechanism of an instrument completely dominated by Mariann Marczi. Csapo’s music, with this game of measured and disturbing silences, proposes a challenge and keeps us in suspense every time these silences are becoming more present, every time the absence shows/ emphasizes the presence more.Rimbaud in the Desert (a title of the most suggestive, considering that this is one of the enfants terribles of modern literature, and a Bartleby’s first class), moves in the music of Jeney through pure evocation, a deliberate loss in the desert. A loss with no return.

Marczi has chosen wisely and carefully a repertory of shining, curious examples, some playful, others startling, of the music for piano of her compatriots. A lesson that teaches us where the new and the old are not incompatible and that Hungary was and remains an indispensable reference in music.

 

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RITMO reviews five Odradek CDs / Part IV

The Spanish classical music magazine RITMO reviewed five of Odradek Records CD’s in it’s march edition. The review of Pina Napolitano’s Schoenberg-recording ends with a cliff-hanger, which will be resolved (for technical reasons) in the beginning of the last review.

“…here they have the proposal of this Italian pianist on the Viennese master, a perfect joint between dissection and expressive sensitivity…”

And in English:

 

Schoenberg

The deepening performed by Pina Napolitano in the production for solo piano of Schoenberg (a journey that, at the time, is for the compositional evolution of the Viennese master) shows that it is a music that requires, thoroughness of analysis and a clear expressive intent, at the same time. It is not a paradox, she herself explains it; in the interpretation of these parts, besides the millimetric accuracy when executing each of the notes and their subsequent polyphonic structures, the expressive dramatic character of the founder of the second Viennese school that was linked to the musical expressionism in its early stages must be sought (in fact, there lies the crux of the matter). “Philology and romanticism”, so accurately and timely, define this approach of the music of Schoenberg by Pina Napolitano. Those who tell us that central and Mediterranean Europeans cannot understand each other: here they have the proposal of this Italian pianist on the Viennese master, a perfect joint between dissection (rather microcellular, than cellular) and expressive sensitivity (almost heartbreaking, disturbing), a Schoenberg that in her hands is not a “historically necessary” mere passage, but one of the most significant contributions to the history of contemporary music. And anyone that does not believe it, anyone that thinks that music of the Viennese master is cold, distant and unfathomable, should listen to this interpretation. Certainly you will change your mind. Without a doubt: Schoenberg is not dead.

 

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RITMO reviews five Odradek CDs / Part III

The Spanish classical music magazine RITMO reviewed five of Odradek Records CD’s in it’s march edition. The third one is a review of Liudmila Georgievskaya’s Beethoven and Schumann CD:

“…her approach to Beethoven’s classicism is very accurate, variations like the fourth one are executed in a pristine way, and the finale at large is bordering on perfection.”

 

English version:

 

The Russian pianist Liudmila Georgievskaya brings two colossal examples of the art of variation of Beethoven and Schumann. The orchestral piano of the master of Bonn, makes a journey that almost seems historical due to the multitude of styles and ways of dealing with a simple theme; a deployment of resources showing the musical maturity and genius of the master from the preclassic purity to the prophetic romanticism awaiting his music without lucking the good humour (yes, it had it, if not, listen how the first variation of these Heroic Variations begins). And opposite this musical treatment that transcends in her search for the universal, the intimate, autobiographical character, the Variations of Schumann make an interesting contrast. Revised throughout her career, the Symphonic Etudes (or variations) Op 13, with influences from the romantic piano of Chopin (in fact the Polish composer had just edited his Etudes Op. 10) and based on a theme of the opera of Marschner, The Templar and the Jewess, they become a showcase of contrasting characters on the borderline between the variation and the study of the concert. The Russian pianist Georgievskaya gives a pure, correct, elegant interpretation that could almost be labelled as restrained; her approach to Beethoven’s classicism is very accurate, variations like the fourth one are executed in a pristine way, and the finale at large is bordering on perfection. However, she remains somewhat shy with Schumann, where the sensible being does not turn out to be so relevant after all. In any case, it is an album that brings us to one of the most curious musical forms: variations and their endless possibilities.

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RITMO reviews five Odradek CDs / Part II

The Spanish classical music magazine RITMO reviewed five of Odradek Records CD’s in its march edition. Todays review is about George King’s CD Jubilees: 

“A luxurious finale. A record showing that the piano (pure) is far from being exhausted. Check it for yourself. I assure you that it is worth it.”

And for the non-Spanish speakers:

Jubilees

If “preparing” a piano was, according to Berio, like “drawing a moustache on the Mona Lisa” (and doing this is in bad taste, at least for Berio and King, so forget the Dadaism), what the Jubilees album shows is that there are compositions for piano that do not require more mechanisms than that of the instrument itself. Matter of honesty, let us say: the beginning of the twentieth century and the present have been very generous with offering piano scores that are almost untouchable/ impossible to play (not because of virtuosity, but because of wealth of junk and annotations that are bordering on insanity), but through these four composers it becomes clear that, not only is it possible to follow a line of pianistic literature “touchable/playable”, but also “audible”.

Lindberg in his pieces has Debussy and Chopin in mind without camouflaging the virtuosic writing that may require an instrument he knows so well: his pieces are a sort of purification process, requiring careful listening to reach catharsis. Benjamin is denoted by the fascination of Messiaen’s harmony, with hidden, contrasting structures and surprising characters; the calm at the first and fifth piece against the aggressiveness of the second and the fourth, the playful third and the final piece with clear influences of the French master. Cashian experiments with what is already a classic; the dialogue between painting and music in a set of parts recreated in the paintings of Ben Hartley; some gouaches on cardboard of scenes of local customs with a certain naïve touch. Special music? Why not. But knowing where its inspiration comes from. In the case of George King and his studies, the references of classical music, jazz and improvisational style are mingled. The latest piece (number six) requires great technical skill (certainly not impossible), that turns out to be trickster; the repeated notes and the rhythmic games of mad speed, asymmetric and accurate at the same time, bring reminiscences of Ligeti and leave the listener excited and captivated. A luxurious finale. A record showing that the piano (pure) is far from being exhausted. Check it for yourself. I assure you that it is worth it.

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RITMO reviews five Odradek CDs / Part I

The Spanish classical music magazine RITMO reviewed five of Odradek Records CD’s in its march edition. Have a look at the first review of Yukiko Kojima’s CD of piano works of Akira Miyoshi:

“A disc to travel in time…An introspection for solo piano, superbly written and released. Not to be missed.”

For the non-Spanish speakers:

 

PURE PIANO
Odradek (Records), which we have already mentioned in this magazine, has released several albums with different piano recordings. As always with this label, the presentations are exemplary. Let’s see what we have now. Yukiko Kojima introduces us to the small (but valuable and revealing) pianistic production of Akira Miyoshi. An album that compiling works from the years of his youth in Paris, with his Sonata, until 1998, the year he concluded his work Pour le piano. A limpid and demanding writing in which Kojima addresses the most extreme parts with accuracy, and the most retracted and intimate ones with delight. Maybe you could only blame him for certain monotony in the dynamics of interpretation; the scores are overflown with contrasts missing a further impetus of expressive power.However, hats off to moments like the second movement of the Sonata (embroidered with expertise through phrases that touch almost the impossible, in a meditative swing almost in trance).And in front of the closed form of neoclassical reminiscences of the Sonata, the Preludes go deep into a more free music; the lack of an objective metric (that is marked by the very breath of the interpreter) makes each version unique. And the interpretation of Kojima is a very good proposal full of contrasts; from passages of serenity and resonance of tubular bells to moments of crystal clear speed. Pour le piano, with its circular and mixed moments, shows again these shocks of tranquillity and almost brutality that are denoted in the works of Miyoshi. A disc to travel in times (that of the history of music and the composer himself) and the ways of seeing the world (eastern, western). An introspection for solo piano superbly written and released. Not to be missed.

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SPLINTERS reviewed on ExpeditionAudio.com

Calling them “authoritative and penetrating performances,” HBDirect profiles Mariann Marczi‘s album SPLINTERS on their features site, ExpeditionAudio.com. Includes review, audio previews, and background on the pieces.

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George King’s CD “Jubilees” reviewed in Gramophone

George King’s new Odradek CD “Jubilees” gets reviewed in Gramophone.

 

 

Yukiko Kojima performing live in Tokyo

Odradek artist Yukiko Kojima performs on the 29th in the Bechstein Salon Shiodome Tokyo. For more info have a look at our calendar.