YORK HÖLLER (b.1944): Topic for Large Orchestra (Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra; Michael Gielen), Horizont (Quadrophonic Electronic Music), Mythos for 13 Instruments, Percussion and 4-Channel Tape (musikFabrik; Zsolt Nagy), Schwarze Halbinseln for Large Orchestra, Vocal and Electronic Sounds (Cologne Radio Choir and Symphony Orchestra; Diego Masson).
Catalogue Number: 06L121
Description: Topic was Höller's first orchestral piece, and clearly shows the influence of his studies with B.A. Zimmermann; the work's nine linked sections are wildly varied in texture and character, demonstrating the young composer's mastery of the orchestra in an exuberant variety of expression. The evolving textures of the 1970/71 electronic piece Horizon create a very personal sound world; less concerned with the range of new sounds available than many electronic pieces, this work utilizes fairly limited electronic means to suggest a sense of structure and progression. Mythos for ensemble with electronics is described by the composer as a 'sound-poem'; it explores musical and poetic archetypes - some very obviously derived from Romantic sources - in a powerfully evocative succession of images. Black Peninsulas of 1982 also uses 4-channel tape, here accompanying full orchestra in a large-scale nocturnal landscape based on speech rhythms, expressive gestures and imagery from the poem 'The Night' by Georg Heym, which is only heard in eerie, electronically modified form as part of the electronic texture.