Jan‡cek, Kod‡ly, Enescu, Carter & Denisov

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COMPOSERS: Carter & Denisov,Enescu,Janacek,Kodaly
LABELS: Finlandia
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: Contemporary Cello
WORKS: Sonatina; Pohadka; Second Sonata
PERFORMER: Anssi Karttunen (cello), Tuija Hakkila (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: 3984-23397-2 Reissue (1988, 1990)
Of the five composers represented on this finely recorded reissue only Elliott Carter is still alive, and his Cello Sonata is already half a century old. Edison Denisov died in 1996, a fact the sleeve fails to acknowledge. His 1971 Cello Sonata is the most recent work. For the rest, Janacek (died 1928) wrote Pohadka in 1910; Kodaly (died 1967) penned his Sonatina in 1921; and Georges Enescu (died 1955) composed his adventurous Second Sonata in 1926. So why such an inappropriate and misleading title? Will it make real contemporary music any easier to sell? Never mind, for each piece expresses individual things in individual and eloquent ways, and Anssi Kartunnen and Tuija Hakkila play with confidence and passion. Stephen Pettitt