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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Frederik Magle, Like A Flame, New Music for Organ

New solo cathedral organ music in the grand tradition? Frederik Magle's Like A Flame (Proprius 2061 2-CD) is very much that. He improvised some 60 works in a marathon session over two days. 23 works were selected out of that for this recording. These were sufficiently and outstandingly inventive such that Magle transcribed them all so that others too might perform them. Good idea.

He is playing the brand new Frobenius organ in Jorlunde church, Denmark, an instrument he was responsible for designing sonically. It sounds quite beautiful.

This is music that is modernly tonal and reaches back to the symphonic organ work of the French school, Tournemire et al., but has the Magle touch and brilliance throughout.

He is young and very able. The music jumps out of the speakers with contrasts of intensity and quietude, some remarkable improvisations that have a multi-dimensional depth one expects of such music. Yet this is in no way generic but sonically present continuously as original and sweepingly expressive.

I like the music all the more as I have listened all the more often. It is a remarkable achievement. All organ afficionados will find this much to their liking, I do believe.

Very recommended.

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