GEORGE WALKER (b.1922): String Quartet No. 2, Lyric for Strings (Son Sonora String Quartet), Poem for Soprano and Chamber Ensemble (Janet Stasio [soprano], Capitol Chamber Artists), 5 Fancies for Ensemble (Videmus Ensemble), Modus for Chamber Ensemble (Cygnus Ensemble), Songs: I Never Saw a Moor, Response, Mother Goose (Circa 2054) (Patricia Green [mezzo]), Take, O Take Those Lips Away, And Wilt Thou Leave Me Thus (James Martin [baritone], George Walker [piano]).
Catalogue Number: 09M078
Description: The substantial quartet is an active, intense work, highly chromatic and tightly organized, in a more or less traditional four-movement structure. The Lyric recalls Mahler and Barber in a richly nocturnal atmosphere, while elsewhere in the ensemble pieces, the composer's eclectic incorporation of dodecaphony, neo-classicism and African-American folk elements into a very personal vocabulary is shown to great advantage. His songs set a wide range of texts with a clear, lyrical vocal line and meticulous attention to word-setting, with original yet unobtrusive accompaniments to underline the poems' character and atmosphere.