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Valentin Silvestrov – Sacred Works (FLAC)

Valentin Silvestrov - Sacred Works (FLAC)
Valentin Silvestrov - Sacred Works (FLAC)

Performer: Kiev Chamber Choir
Conductor: Mykola Hobdych
Composer: Valentin Silvestrov
Audio CD
Number of Discs: 1
Format: FLAC (image+cue)
Label: ECM
Size: 249 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: no

01. Liturgical Chants
02. Two Spiritual Songs
03. Two Spiritual Chants
04. Two Psalms of David
05. Diptych
06. Alleluia

Musical Bliss

For those of you who, like me, have come to love modern, and I mean truly modern, choral music, this CD should provide a most blissful and satisfying listening experience. Make no mistake, the music on this CD is like nothing I have ever heard, and I’ve heard it all. That said, I would like to reassure all potential listeners that this faire is immensely accessible and immediately beautiful. At once strange, familiar, lovely and tonal, this music seems composed of finely drawn tiles of beautifully harmonized melodic strands, which flow together to form an ethereal mosaic of great musical beauty and spiritual wonder.

I know that sounds a bit overblown, but I really love the music on this CD. 21st century music in every way, this faire should appeal to those of us who have come to love the music of Whitacre, Lauridsen, Gjeilo, Vasks, Esenwalds, Miskinis, Mealor, and Clausen (among others), though it is not quite the same. This music is less structured, almost infinite in its vision, yet easily at home with listeners who love music of that genre. At times, it comes across as a bit single-minded, possibly monotonous; and yet, when it ends, I invariably turn it back to the beginning and listen to it again. It’s almost like bathing in a musical version of universal peace and serenity.

In my view, Ukrainian composer Valentine Silvestrov has imbued this music with all of the feelings and sensations we would like to carry with us into our spiritual eternity: joy, melancholy, happiness, sadness, cognizance, awe, and love. It’s all there in lovely, highly expressive musical images. Occasionally, I hear short references to Bach, Schubert, and Rachmaninov; but always in a dreamy, 21st century, near-caricature sort of way. Make no mistake though, in every way this music is quite original – not ‘new age’ and definitely in no way avant-garde.

As in the 2012 follow-up CD by Silvestrov, “Sacred Songs” (also highly recommended), the Kiev Chamber Choir and conductor Mykola Hobdych are superb and, I believe, deserve ample credit for their part in the artistic creation of this music. It seems almost to have been a partnership.

This is no doubt a rare and exotic musical find. I hope it finds its way into the hands and ears of as many listeners as possible

Highly Recommended!

3 thoughts on “Valentin Silvestrov – Sacred Works (FLAC)”

  1. слышал я в концерте премьерное исполнение этой музыки. писать своего мнения о ней не буду, иначе меня тут сходу забанят. за мат.
    Гобдыч, конечно, сделал то, что до него не удавалось никому – заставил Сильвестрова написать не только абсолютно чуждую его мировоззрению музыку, но и несколько раз переписывать уже готовые произведения под специфические возможности конкретного хора.
    из общей массы явно выделяется Диптих, причем и тут показательный момент: музыка на шевченковский текст вышла умнее и стромнее, чем другая часть.
    кстати, первый вариант диптиха на те же тексты был куда удачнее (Заповіт, естественно).
    Сильвестров, впреки обыкновению, после концерта был непривычно разговорчив (после смерти жены он “ушел в себя” и резко сократил общение с журналистами).
    я хотел задать один единственный вопрос: “Зачем?”
    глянул в лицо В.В., и понял, что задавать его нет резону.

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