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Minimalist (LCO8)

The London Chamber Orchestra

℗ 1990

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The London Chamber Orchestra • 1990 • Minimalist (LCO8)

This superb collection of works by 20th century minimalist composers spotlights works written for string orchestra. It opens with John Adams' Shaker Loops, a piece with strings set on rapid tremolo throughout — creating a beautiful, shimmering quality counterbalanced by an aggressive scrubbing sound. Steve Reich's Eight Lines — a reworking of his incredible 1979 work Octet, scored this time for string orchestra and piano — is a real gem. The orchestra moves like a well-oiled machine and stops on a dime with the beautiful, long tones of the strings cascading over the choppy piano lines. Glass' Company is more dynamic in its interpretation on this release than on other notable recordings. Closing piece The Frontier by David Heath seems out of character on this recording. The mood is definitely passionate and emotional by traditional standards — the unusual chord structures (such as the tritone), interlocking rhythms, and tremolo glissandos make it seem at times like horror movie music. Enjoyable, though not up to the standards of the other included works.

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