Schnittke's Piano Quintet, a creative response to his mother's death, is an austere, haunting work full of grief and tenderness that marks one of his early ventures into polystylistic writing. The opening piano solo is unique, a spare statement of puzzlement in the face of tragedy. It gives way to a waltz, as if recapturing a lost past, then the graceful dance melody literally disintegrates as the strings venture off into other regions, vainly trying to reassemble the theme and failing. At the end of its touching five movements the music's despair is transformed into serene, hard-won acceptance. Shostakovitch's 15th Quartet, his final statement in that form, premiered just months before his death. It's six slow movements are shot through with contemplative sadness and regret. The music is so rich in texture and substance that attention never flags.
If you've never heard anything by Right Said Fred apart from their worldwide mega-hit "I'm Too Sexy," then you are missing out on one of the best dance-pop bands of this generation. To base your opinion of the band on that one song is like judging the Beatles' entire catalog by repeated listenings to a song like "Yellow Submarine." Sure, it's fun and catchy, but there is so much more to the band than that one piece of pop fluff. This, their fourth album and first as a duo, is a huge step forward for the Freds and their best album yet by far. Richard Fairbrass went from being their vocalist to being a real force to be reckoned with. His voice is rich and full of self-assured power, and he can wrap it around a ballad ("I Know What Love Is," "Feel Like a Woman") or a dancefloor filler ("Love Song," "Bring Your Smile"). The normally cold electronic dance beats are transformed into human heartbeats by Fred Fairbrass' joyous acoustic guitar strums. Tracks like "Mojive," "You're My Mate," and "Lovers.com" leap out of the speakers with a renewed sense of confidence. "The Sun Changes Everything" is power pop with a dance beat and Beach Boys-esque harmonies.
The Murail "Tellur" is a fantastic work, in fact when you hear the opening it doesn't sound like a guitar, more like electronic music,it begins in the high register,harmonics used, that slowly then decends, the impetus of the work is the flamenco style of playing mixed with these extended techniques, The French avant-garde, French composers are not prolific, they hone single works for months prior to writing, and really only write single works within any genre, (this is Murail's only work for the guitar) The Lachenmann by contrast is a early work before he really discovered his voice and relays, relies on the performers reciting text of Chris Caudwell,activist like stuff that today sounds very dated in a self-conscious way.
Chicago electric/acoustic keyboarist. Quite intriguing contemporary fusion, with Paul McCandless (reeds) and vocalist Bonnie Herman.