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Australian Chamber Music

Elena Kats-Chernin Blue Silence (2006)
Percy Grainger La Scandinavie (1902)
Don Banks Three Studies for Violoncello and Piano (1954)
Alicia Grant Night Spell (2006)
Martin Wesley-Smith Morning Star Lament (2010)
Ian Farr Sonata for cello and piano (1969)
Ian Munro Lucy Sleeps (1992)
Matthew Hindson Jungle Fever (1998)

David Pereira & Timothy Young

TallPoppies TP222

Tall Poppies, with expert producer/sound engineer Belinda Webster at the helm for many years, is enjoying 21st birthday celebrations with multiple awards.

Their latest CD received of Australian music for cello and piano is wide ranging, with several works which might be considered by young cello/piano duos in UK and elsewhere who are building their repertoires.

Percy Grainger is enjoying a deserved revival; in his chamber music, his piano parts must be tempting for pianists; there is a huge output to be explored, and these pieces are relished by this excellent duo.

Elena Kats-Chernin
's Blue Silence (2006) seeks to create a calming audio-environment for her mentally ill son. Ian Farr's powerful Sonata helped him through "several yeaars of emotional turmoil" during which he had planned a concertante Dance of Death, its mood and ideas carried over into this sonata. Hindson's Jungle Fever reflects repetitive delirium which sufferers from those illnesses might experience. Ian Munro is continuing to celebrate the marvel of his daughter's birth and growth to adulthood...

Percy Grainger is enjoying a deserved revival; in his chamber music, his piano parts must be tempting for pianists; there is a huge output to be explored.

Recommended to purchasers in Europe.

Peter Grahame Woolf

See a moving student video experiment backed by Elena's Blue Silence




Elena Kats-Chernin

Chamber music

Chamber of Horrors

Charlston Noir for 4 basses (1996) The Four Basses:
Chamber of Horrors (1995)
Still Life (2001)
Wild Rice (1996)
Gypsy Ramble (1996) Perihelion:
Velvet Revolution for horn trio (1999)

Alice Giles, blue harp; Patricia Pollett, viola; Nicholas Bochner, cello; Carson Dron, piano David Pereira, cello
Kees Boersma, Damien Eckerlsey, Alex Henery, Kirsty McCahon - basses ; Tall Poppies Ensemble:
Hector McDonald, horn; John Harding, violin; Ian Munro, piano.


Tall Poppies TP181


Piano Music
Lisa Moore: piano

Purple Prelude
Russian Rag
Sonata "Lost and Found"
Alexander Rag
Stur in dur
Variations on a Serious Black Dress
Suburban Rag
Schubert Blues
Get Well Rag

Tall Poppies TP147


Two CDs by a prominent young Australian composer, showing imagination and confidence, without straying far from a minimalist predeliction. Tall Poppies is an enterprising label, devoted to Australian composers and performers, and their catalogue is well worth checking out. You will find some names familiar in UK and Europe, but many others scarcely known here; humbling! .

Of these, a decided preference and strong recommendation for the mixed chamber music disc. Kats-Chernin describes herself as a survivor from the ruthless tuition of Lachenmann, to whom she is grateful although emerged so chastened that she stopped composing for some years, latterly settling for "a sort of post-modern 'light music', more obviously so in the piano disc.

Lots of originality in exploring unusual instruments and combinations in Chamber of Horrors (a striking double bass quartet as opener; Alice Giles' midi- harp has interesting sonorities) and there are substantial items for viola and solo cello (some of these brought together from other CDs in the Tall Poppies catalogue).

Presentation is generally good, with full information about all the participants; the guillotine nearly missed cutting the pages correctly for the piano disc, with several Rags after Joplin, it is all slightly too relaxed for my taste.

Peter Grahame Woolf