These chamber works bring Sony's adventurous, timely Ligeti series to a natural pinnacle. Long the challenger of stylistic stasis and customary demonstrations of excellence, Ligeti has outdone himself here (as he did with the fantastic Mechanical Music release). The Trio for Violin, Horn, and Piano (1982) challenges its players to stay in step with each other even while expanding virtuosity to the breaking point. Marie-Luise Neunecker plays such full horn parts that they roll flow over the tonal bounds, as does Saschko Gawriloff's violin and Pierre-Laurent Aimard's piano… –Andrew Bartlett..
The sophomore effort from writer and director Greg Pritikin, who previously co-directed and acted in 1998's Totally Confused, Dummy stars Oscar winner Adrien Brody (The Pianist, Summer of Sam) as Steven, a recently unemployed ne'er-do-well who has difficulty expressing himself. Steven's best friend is Fanny, an aspiring singer played by Milla Jovovich (The Fifth Element, Resident Evil) who, along with Steven, is just looking for her niche. Eventually Fanny takes a shine to Yiddish music and Steven finds he has a knack for ventriloquism. Through his newfound talent, Steven discovers that he is able to overcome his social problems through his dummy and decides to try impressing and winning the heart of Lorena, played by Vera Farmiga (Autumn in New York, 15 Minutes). The winner of the Special Jury Prize at the 2003 Santa Barbara Film Festival, Dummy also stars Illeana Douglas and Jared Harris.
Omnivore's 2013 double-disc set Buck Em! The Music of Buck Owens (1955-1967) provides an interesting spin on Buck Owens: through a collection of mono singles, live tracks, alternate takes, early 45s, and other rarities, it tells an alternate history of Buck's prime years. If there's a hit on this 50-track collection, it's almost always in a version that's slightly different than what usually shows up on a standard greatest-hits. "Second Fiddle," "Love's Gonna Live Here," "I Don't Care (Just as Long as You Love Me)," "I've Got a Tiger by the Tail," and "Before You Go" are all in mono, there's an early version of "Ain't It Amazing Gracie," and "Act Naturally" is live, so they're familiar enough to not feel jarring and they do provide the core of a collection that winds up wandering into some pretty interesting territory.
The liner notes of The Hugo Masters: An Anthology of Chinese Classical Music contain extensive documentation of the various instruments used in Chinese solo and orchestral music, with descriptions of their history and modifications, as well as an essay to help Western listeners understand the background of Chinese classical music.