Melody of the Universe: how the Soviet "father of electronics" created a cosmic musical instrument
This, without exaggeration, unique musical unit could not be attributed to any type of instrument. Moreover, the melody that he plays after a couple of mysterious passes with his hands…

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Jazz together: six bright duet albums
Jazz is an abundant genre. Lush orchestras, lengthy improvisations, dueling soloists, a meandering rhythm section, and so on. But not always the more the better. When jazzmen consciously limit themselves,…

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Madonna's discography as a mirror of digital recording evolution
Madonna's first albums coincided with the distribution of CDs on the market and her subsequent works clearly show how priorities changed in recording. Let's look at them in more detail.…

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Conditional Bach: four new albums of academic music

Little-known composers, significant composers and  play Bach “as it should be”, according to the notes. This is the catch of June.

It is gratifying when musicians fearlessly change their roles. This is, of course, about the reissue of Keith Jarrett’s Bach album. It’s also great when star musicians bring out good contemporary composers. Or they make conceptual programs around some humane idea that everyone can understand. And it turns out to be a classic for everyone, but not a simple crossover, but — for people with sensitive ears.
Keith Jarrett “The Well-Tempered Clavier, book I” Keith Jarrett’s New album is always an event in the jazz world. And now it’s classic. However, the material on this album was recorded in March 1987 at a concert in new York.Actually, the outstanding American jazz improviser Keith Jarrett is no stranger to Bach: he recorded albums with his music for ECM, and played the harpsichord with the meticulousness of an authenticist. That is, obviously-deep in the subject. Now he has recorded the entire “Well-tempered clavier” – a work so textbook that specialists call it the abbreviation “HTK”.Jarrett is about sound (shiny and polished), phrasing (elegant and funny), and improvisation (witty, meditative… put any epithet). Bach is a genius melody and, at the same time, a composer’s master class. That is, to some extent, any composer who writes tonal music is such a conditional Bach.And, although these melodies are difficult to spoil, but as one of my friends-a musicologist-says, Bach defines the maturity of a musician. I don’t want to make any conclusions here, but Jarrett’s HTK turned out to be a little dry and insipid. Although he pushes the pace and tries to play a driving, clear, rockenrolnomu, but as a result, and jarretovsky almost nothing remains, and Bang some… that’s what conditional: took notes — and played.If we compare it with the recent HTK project of Pierre-Laurent Eymar (2014, Deutsche Grammophon), it is better not to compare it. But if you consider Jarrett’s tour de force as a crossover project — for jazz fans who are not familiar with the HTK — it is, of course, very cool. On the other hand, it would be better to improvise something, like Brad Meldau on the album After Bach — this is really a congenial performance and co-composition!Apple Music, Yandex.Music, DeezerAlexandre Kantorow ” Saint-Saëns-Piano Concertos No. 3-5 ” to be Honest, I was already planning to write about this album, which was released in early may. But then I threw it out for a long time. Now I will return to the selection, because there was a plot twist — the Frenchman Alexander Kantorov came to Moscow for the Contest. Tchaikovsky and charmed everyone there with his brilliant skill and freshness of interpretation. In General, we can say our man. By the way, the results of the competition at the time of writing the review were unknown to me.On this album with Saint-Saens ‘ last three concerts (he has five in total), this very freshness of interpretation is present at its best. Not to mention the fact that the concerts themselves — amazingly beautiful, light, with beautiful melodies and zero pathos-are not too played in themselves. Despite the fact that the soloist there is where to Shine with technique, these moments in Kantorov’s game do not dominate. It is an illustration of Marcel Proust’s idea that virtuoso technique is a “window” into the meaning of a work.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, DeezerHilary Hahn “García Abril: 6 Partitas”on the cover of this CD, the name HILARY appears in large letters. And small — the composer and so on. What to say, violinist Hilary Hahn is a brand, and she can do anything. For example, as here: record an album of works by a modern composer for solo violin. However, this snub-nosed girl seems to have already recorded all the famous works with the world’s leading orchestras and conductors.Six partitas were written by the contemporary Spanish composer Anton Garcia Abril. Outside of Spain, he is not very well known, and at home-Grand and master, the author of soundtracks, in particular, to “Texas Adios” with Franco Nero. There’s not much else to say, and you can’t bring any texture. And the music, meanwhile, is extremely curious. Neoclassical in a good way — so melodic, slightly angular, passionate in Spanish. Not the lament of a lonely violin and not stingy beauty: richly ornamented, many intervals, sounds tight, juicy and driving.Apple Music, Yandex.Music, DeezerAlbrecht Mayer “Longing for Paradise” the Famous German oboist Albrecht Mayer plays music from the first world war and between the wars. Hence the name – “Desire for Paradise”. Not an obvious selection: the English classic of the XX century, Edward Elgar, Richard Strauss, who does not need representations, and the little-known Englishman Eugene Goossens, who is not a music fan.Works, you can say, hit! Soliloquy (“Monologue”) by Elgar is a romantic song without words, light and languishing. In the same mood is Richard Strauss’s d major Concerto for oboe and small orchestra. With Ravel’s “Le Tambeau de Couperen” everything is clear — it is recorded every month on all possible instruments, and the oboe version — why not, after all, this is Mayer, after all — it is almost number one in his shop.In an interview, the musician says (see the video) that for a long time he selected the perfect combinations for the Strauss concert, around which — literally — the album’s program is built. For dessert — a one-act Concerto For oboe and orchestra by Eugene Goossens, which, for all Ravel’s influences and demands for virtuosity, is quite original and sometimes exotic. Strange folk tunes with a snare drum beat-Yes, it’s about the same war.

Madonna's discography as a mirror of digital recording evolution
Madonna's first albums coincided with the distribution of CDs on the market and her subsequent works clearly show how priorities changed in recording. Let's look at them in more detail.…

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Ides of March: 6 new classical music albums
Classics don't die because they are played all the time. And they play it because it is a classic. Iron logic. But in fact, each generation finds something of its…

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Freaking out in earnest: interview with Carlos Beneto Grau of the Spanish Brass quintet
"Rock band from the wind" or a serious circus? The Spanish Brass wind quintet from Barcelona performed at the international music festival in Yaroslavl. Spanish macho virtuosos first appeared in…

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Summing up: Russian jazz in 2018
It is difficult to divide music into years, especially to sum up some results for a certain period of time. Music is too Grand to be measured in days, even…

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