EUGENE HARTZELL (b.1932): String Quartet, Monologue 6 for Contrabass "Considerations", Short Takes I for Flute, Clarinet, Horn and Piano Trio, Short Takes II for Flute and Piano Quartet, Monologue 8 for Trumpet "St. Louis Choruses", Duo for Violin and Clarinet, Horn Trio "A Little Light Music".
Catalogue Number: 09K089
Description: These formally rigorous chamber works by an American student (at one generational remove) of the Second Viennese School combine dodecaphonic strictness with a classical concern for structure and vigorous and invigorating, expressiveness. The tough and energetic quartet is a dodecaphonic work in one extended span which incorporates distinct movements; at times the music achieves a recognisably Beethovenian cohesiveness and drive. Many of his works incorporate apparently paradoxical elements borrowed from jazz, for example in the two Short Takes ensemble pieces, in which rich harmony and energetic syncopated rhythms decorate the underlying note-rows that provide the works' structure. These unexpected bursts of down-to-earth jazziness lend a decidedly human appeal and approachability to an idiom that might otherwise be mistaken for a forbiddingly strict, academic one. This 'twelve-tone jazz' is given freest rein in the entertaining trio, sounding for all the world like music for a nightclub scene in a Second Viennese opera of decadence and intrigue. Ensemble Wiener Collage; René Staar.