KETIL HVOSLEF (b.1939): Chamber Works, Vol. 2 - Duodu for Viola and Violin, Ludum for 7 Flutes, Octet for Flutes, Dano Tiore for Soprano, 3 Strings and Harpsichord, Duo for Accordions, Quartetto Percussivo for 2 Percussionists and 2 Pianists.
Catalogue Number: 11S068
Label: LAWO Classics
Reference: LWC 1081
Description: Quirky, appealing works for the composer's characteristic odd ensembles of instruments. The pieces all exhibit the composer's sense of humor in one way or another, from the busy Italianate nonsense text of the emotional vocal scena Dano Tiore (but what emotions? You can tell, very easily, but in the absence of a comprehensible text the effect is richly comic) to the bouncy unpredictability of Duodu, to the composer's statement that the work for seven flutes is somehow a 'study' for the one for eight, to the restless fluttering of the accordion duo, illustrating the Hans Christian Andersen story in which a small feather becomes a multitude of chickens. The idiom throughout is consistently very tonal, adding to the ready accessibility of the works. All the pieces share another common characteristic; Hvoslef's trademark jumpy ostinati and repeating figures - not used minimalistically, for the most part, but to propel the music along like a sped-up film - are even more consistently on display than usual. In some cases these rhythms form the accompaniment to some fine melodic writing, as in the flute octet, a particularly satisfying and varied piece, or for that matter Dano Tiore, its anachronistic harpsichord instantly making the piece a parody of early classical opera; in others they are an end in themselves, as in the ticking and twitching hyperactive mechanism of the Percussion Quartet. Various artists.