Saturday, February 6, 2016

Ladder of Escape 10: Contemporary Music for Harpsichord - Roderick de Man - Hope Lee - Alexander Voormolen - Louis Andriessen - Giel Vleggar - Geoffrey King - Joe Cutler - JacobTV - Various Artists - Annelie de Man, Harpsichord - Attacca 2008

Let's have a little musical bipolarity. Elegant music by Couperin and Royer followed by this disc of modern works for harpsichord and various instruments. 

Voormolen's "Suite de Clavecin" is the most accessible work here, and my other favorite is Louis Andriessen's "Dubblespoor" for vibraphone, glockenspiel, celesta, vibraphone and harpsichord, also quite approachable. Then, we have a piece such as JacobTV's "Doggie Steps" for violin, cello, harpsichord and tape - the tape portion includes barking dogs, a few cats (which I like, it recalls the music of P. Bimmstein) and a female voice (I assume the harpsichordist) speaking about "taking doggy steps". "even overweight dogs... now you can give him a leg up with doggy steps". This piece seems to be an imagined commercial, with it's chopped up vocals, the speaker sounding as if she has inhaled too much laughing gas. Or perhaps she's very high and very excited about the product. This piece is not for everyone, that is for sure. As an amusement I quite like it, it is humorous and the actual music that rides along with the vocals is fun, actually it's very good I think. It would be nice to hear a version of the piece without the spoken word.

I have included booklet scans.



cjvinthechair said...

Ah...! Will put my slight lack of enthusiasm for chamber music on hold for the harpsichord (& harp !), & particularly for a modern showcase like this.
Magnificent, thanks !

Tzadik said...

Cjv you are most welcome! I'm sure you will enjoy the two pieces I mentioned as favorites - as far as "Doggy Steps" -well I doubt you will be driving around blasting it on a nice weekend day ;)

If you have favorite here...I'd like to know what it is!