Patterson, Holst, Olsen & Tinoco

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4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Holst,Olsen & Tinoco,Patterson
LABELS: Meridian
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: Music for Wind Quintet
WORKS: Works
PERFORMER: Galliard Ensemble
The Galliard Ensemble, a wind quintet formed in 1993 while its members were studying at the Royal Academy of Music, makes a very favourable impression on its recording debut. Its programme includes three pieces by Paul Patterson, an Academy professor for many years: the well known, witty Comedy for Five Winds; a student Quintet of some abrasiveness, but already showing Patterson’s characteristic gift for direct communication; and Westerly Winds, a recent lightweight suite based on four West Country folksongs (or to be precise on three folksongs and Vaughan Williams’s ‘Linden Lea’). These are complemented by Holst’s 1903 Wind Quintet, a fluent and tuneful if rather anonymous piece from what his daughter Imogen called his ‘long and painful’ apprenticeship, and by two winning works from the Ensemble’s enterprising composers’ competitions: James Olsen’s Imbroglio, written when he was still at school, a well constructed, well written narrative showing great promise; and the imaginative, arresting Autumn Wind by the Portuguese composer Luis Tinoco. The Ensemble’s playing is incisive, confident and well tuned even in extreme registers; the recording preserves an excellent balance between the instruments, though the bright acoustic militates against subtlety at the quiet end of the dynamic spectrum. Anthony Burton