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Monday, November 23, 2015

Giya Kancheli, Chiaroscuro, Kremer, Kopatchinskaja, Kremerata Baltica

Georgian composer Giya Kancheli is 80. In part to celebrate that and the intrinsic value of the music itself, Kremerata Baltica with Gidon Kremer and Patricia Kopatchinskaja have recorded two very appealing works released under the title Chiaroscuro (ECM New Series 2442).

They are tonal, rhapsodic, introspective works that have their own life in a post-modern landscape. The title work "Chiaroscuro" with Gidon Kremer as violin soloist, and "Twilight" for Kremer and Patricia Kopatchinskaja, have a sprawling, somewhat mysteriously reflective aural landscaping with some genetic resemblance at first blush to the Barber "Adagio" and Berg's "Violin Concerto." That is only in mood, for the music is most definitely of our time, but also Georgian, hauntingly lambent, in the sense of softly bright, radiant, reflectively melancholy to my ears and at times unleashing a momentary turbulence.

Kramer, Kopatchinskaja and the Kremerata Baltica sound wonderfully well with this music. They fully capture the mood with the help of the meticulously soundstaged ECM audio.

There is a glowing yet tender quality to the music that reflects the sensibilities of our times somehow, yet does so in strikingly original terms. The minor sonance unravels with a kind of logical inevitably, a sweetly taking stock. And in the end you are moved, ravished and taken away by the music's dramatic resolve.

I cannot but recommend it heartily. It enthralls and envelopes the listener in adagio dreams. It will doubtless appeal to many as it does to me. Bravo!

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