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Wolfgang Rihm Edition vol.3 (FLAC)

Wolfgang Rihm Edition vol.3 (FLAC)
Wolfgang Rihm Edition vol.3 (FLAC)

Composer: Wolfgang Rihm
Performer: SWR Vokalensemble, Barbara van den Boom, Aleksandra Lustig, Ute Wille, Susanne Meissner-Schaufelberger, Rudiger Linn, Hubert Mayer, Bernhard Hartmann, Mikhail Shashkov, Angelika Frei, Martin Huber, Michael Peuse, Heinrich Golzenleuchter, Marcus Creed
Orchestra: WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln
Conductor: Jonathan Stockhammer, Gianluigi Gelmetti, Rupert Huber
Format: FLAC (tracks)
Label: Hänssler
Catalogue: HAEN93227
Release: 2008
Size: 257 MB
Recovery: +3%
Scan: cover

Symphony No. 1, Op. 3
01. I. Appassionato
02. II. Adagio

Symphony No. 2, “Erster und letzter Satz”
03. Erster Satz
04. Marcia funebre

05. Nachtwach
06. Vers Une Symphonie Fleuve III
07. Raumauge

Continuing the series of recordings devoted to the music of Wolfgang Rihm, which includes two world premiere recordings. The musicians of the Radio Symphony Orchestra Stuttgart play with the utmost virtuosity and this is surely a disc no fan of contemporary music will want to be without.

Hänssler Classics is committed to recording all the works of Wolfgang Rihm, one of the most prolific and intriguing German composers to emerge in the late twentieth century, and this CD is the third installment in the Rihm Edition. The composer shows remarkable assurance in his first symphony, written in 1969, when he was 17. It’s a serial piece, and its roiling turbulence and unpredictable juxtapositions make it very much a product of the defiant modernism that dominated music in postwar Europe. The symphony is emotionally and dramatically charged, a potent expression of the composer’s credo, which he was to articulate five years later: “Music must be full of emotion, the emotion full of complexity.”

The second symphony, composed in 1974, is more aesthetically daring, an example of Rihm’s willingness to go to expressive extremes. It begins with a single pitch that grows in timbral complexity for over a minute and is followed by a silence lasting 35 seconds. Gestures of that boldness, regardless of whatever other responses they elicit, are guaranteed to rivet and focus an audience’s attention, and when the orchestra finally reenters in an expressionistic, densely contrapuntal haze, listeners can’t help hearing it with a heightened alertness.

In the later works recorded here, written between 1987 and 1995, Rihm has matured; the youthful angst has been replaced by a more controlled and sophisticated handling of his material. Vers une symphonie fleuve III, for orchestra (1992-1995), is a particularly attractive and poetically eloquent piece. Two large choral works use a full range of extended vocal techniques, always to meaningful expressive ends. The performances by Radio-Sinfonieorchester Stuttgart des SWR and SWR Vokalensemble Stuttgart, under a variety of conductors, are consistently superlative, deeply committed, and technically polished. The CD should appeal to listeners with an interest in new developments in unapologetic modernism.

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