IANNIS XENAKIS (1922-2001): Xenakis Edition, Vol. 11 - Eonta for Piano, 2 Trumpets and 3 Trombones, Morsima-Amorsima for Piano, Violin, Cello and Double Bass (Callithumpian Consort; Stephen Drury), Akea for Piano and String Quartet (The JACK Quartet), Paille in the Wind for Cello and Piano (Rohan de Saram).
Catalogue Number: 06L119
Description: This latest volume brings works rare on disc even for Xenakis. The late Paille (1992) is short (five minutes) and doesn't even require virtuosity ; Akea (1986) comes from the period when Xenakis built his works on pitch scales; Morsima-Amorsima is from 1956-62 and part of his "stochastic" period but the major piece here has to be 1963's Eonta, a wall of sound lasting 22 minutes in this performance which is written using pitches determined by set theory. Dry sounding in theory, this produces some very striking sounds, as when all the brass instruments play into the strings of the piano. The only previous recording of this I know of was on the Dutch Attacca label, from around 1990 (there is no recording or copyright date on the disc); at that time, there was currently performing in underground rock circles a band by the name of Napalm Death, one of whose members once told a magazine interviewer that one of the goals of the band was to "produce spontaneous bowel movements" among its audience. That quote popped up in my mind when listening to Eonta for the first time way back when... Aki Takahashi (piano).