EERO HÄMEENNIEMI (b.1951): Symphony No. 3 in C (Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra; Sakari Oramo), Viola Concerto (Tommi Aalto [viola], FRSO; Hannu Lintu).
Catalogue Number: 12I079
Reference: ABCD 214
Description: A moody, dark piece with elements of film music, Slavic melancholy and Petterssonian bleakness, the symphony (1999) ebbs and flows through 23 eventful minutes, enveloping the listener in its gloomy romantic-yet-modern atmosphere (several instances of highlighted low brass instruments add to the smoky, fire-lit feel) while the 2001 concerto is in exactly the same slow-attacca- moderate-tempo form, a bit brighter in spirit with a very attractive theme. Theme (singular) since Hämeenniemi's works are monothematic, highlighting his compositional craft and creativity and the care he takes to never sound monotonous (although one may not understand the composer's note is which he compares his style to Jerry Lewis and Eddie Murphy in their roles as "The Nutty Professor" [!]).