The gentle madness of Paul Driessen is everywhere in his animated shorts — editorial, color palette, sound effects — but mainly it’s that line. For 30 years he’s been honing an affect that at first blush seems positively arthritic. Just watch the pictures move for a few seconds, though, and you’ll see grace, fluidity and tight control in those wavy outlines. His goofy and lackadaisical disregard for the niceties of human anatomy leads his characters to set out for destinations where not every body part arrives at once. His outlines dissolve in a turmoil of gaps.
Following the delectable String Symphonies Volume 1 comes an equally delectable Volume 2, with one sinfonia by Johann Stamitz (1717-1757) and three by Franz Xaver Richter (1709-1789). Where Volume 1 covered works from 1740-1750, this one covers the period 1750-1755. The musicians play on period instruments with unequalled elegance and warmth. Producers should use this absolutely superb recordings as a reference model. Rarely baroque music has sounded with so much detail and perfect sound quality.
The New Dutch Academy Mannheim Project is an immense project involving original material from dozens of libraries throughout the world, the analysis of manuscripts, the preparation of working scores, the consultation of treatises and other sources; thought about aesthetically schools, flows, changes and in relation to instruments, playing techniques and musical realization; and the combination of all this with performance, learning the Mannheim language, and bringing the music to life. Through this album we are very proud to launch our Mannheim Project, and to set the tone for the resulting series of recordings which will present newly discovered works, many of which will appear here for the first time in recorded form.