Hanson, Rangstršm, Ibert, Khachaturian, Prokofiev, Druckman, Revueltas, Nielsen, Ginastera, Leifs, etc

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Druckman,etc,Ginastera,Hanson,Ibert,Khachaturian,Leifs,Nielsen,Prokofiev,Rangstrom,Revueltas
LABELS: Ondine
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: Earquake
WORKS: Music by Hanson, Rangström, Ibert, Khachaturian, Prokofiev, Druckman, Revueltas, Nielsen, Ginastera, Leifs,
PERFORMER: Helsinki PO/Leif Segerstam
‘Earquake’, which arrives complete with spongy yellow earplugs, is a neat idea: to rattle the listener’s bones with an unpredictable collection of music. There are, however, two flaws: the idea of ‘loud’ music is meaningless in the CD age: should we prefer it, we can have our Hildegard as noisy as our Night on the Bare Mountain. The other problem is that in a search for unusual ‘loud’ repertoire the enterprising Ondine has in fact come up with numerous variations on the bacchanalic dance. It is surprising, given the diversity of styles represented, that this should be so, but be it Respighi’s War Dance, Ibert’s Bacchanale, Revueltas’s Night of the Mayas, or Bolcom’s Machine there comes the same motoric bass. Still, there are invigorating performances here: Prokofiev’s outrageous Ala and Lolly, Hanson’s stunning Sixth and Leifs’s volcanic Hekla. But one misses the rhythmic tension and complex textures of Bernstein’s Prelude, Fugue and Riffs, Birtwistle’s Gawain, Bartók’s Mandarin, Stravinsky’s Rite, anything by Andriessen – but then I guess you wouldn’t want or need to use the earplugs. Helen Wallace