KALEVI AHO (b.1949): Solo IV for Cello (Samuli Peltonen), Solo XII - in memoriam EJR for Viola (Hiyoli Togawa), Solo IX for Oboe (Piet van Bockstal), Solo XIV for Clarinet (Simon Reitmaier), Solo V for Bassoon (Bram van Sambeek), Solo X for Horn (Marie-Luise Neunecker), Solo III for Flute (Sharon Bezaly).
Catalogue Number: 07X051
Format: SACD hybrid
Description: Aho's "Solo" series, like his many concerti, is an ongoing enterprise, aimed at expanding the repertoire for all the instruments, more or less, beyond the obvious soloists of the past. So far, there are 17 Solo pieces. Some of them originated as part of Aho’s preparations when composing a concerto for the instrument in question, while others were written for competitions, including Solo III for flute and Solo IV for cello on the present release. All make considerable technical and interpretive demands on the players, in some cases trying out techniques with which the composer was familiarising himself for the concerti, as in the case of Solo IX, which is related to the fourth movement of the Oboe Concerto, a demanding cadenza featuring multiphonics and Arabic scales. All are of substantial dimensions - around 10 minutes - and all have considerable emotional content, regardless of their didactic, autodidactic, or competition origins. The viola work, for instance, was composed in memory of Rautavaara, and its mood of eloquent, elegiac lament is unmistakable. As a sample of a cycle of outstanding instrumental writing, this should be self-recommending beyond the horizons of the Aho completists among us.