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Alan Rinehart : Dreams Laid Down : CD

KARMON: Dreams Laid Down: GIBSON: Variationes Sobre Una Tema de Juan Lennon Op. 89: OLIVER: Ancient Heroes Suite: BEAUVAIS: Beginning of the Day: DUKE: Soliloquies and Dreams.

Alan Rinehart

Ravello Records RR7996

This is an exciting CD of entirely new works by five composers whose names may not be known to too many listeners. Well, if that is the case, you should get to know them as soon as possible. It opens with Michael Karmon’s six- work movement work, the title of which is the CD’s title also, and one which was named after a book of poems by our player’s wife Janice Notland. The pieces are very varied and always tonal, but constantly interesting and entertaining, with many moments of emotional content, as well as lively, dance – like parts too. The first movement Swirl of Finches, is every bit as excitable as you might expect, whilst the final piece, and the one named after the entire suite is enigmatic, and yet always holding one’s interest with its chordal opening followed by its gentle harmonies thereafter.

Richard Gibson’s work takes John Lennon’s famous melody Julia, named after his mother, and treats it to a set of variations; however don’t expect to hear it the way you might remember it as the actual melody is hidden amongst a number of unusual key changes, and chordal juxtapositions

Rinehart commissioned the Ancient Heroes suite from John Oliver, and each of its six movements pays tribute to a poet (Rumi), and 4 famous composers, Couperin, Milan, Dowland and Sanz, with the final Passacaille following the variation form and yet, similarly to the other movements putting them all in a modern context, with the occasional part reminding you of the actual composer being paid tribute to.

William Beauvais’s Beginning of the Day is a quick moving piece that moves through several patterns and in a number of keys that gives you the impression of an improvisation, while it is of course most definitely not.

The final piece is the seven – movement Soliloquies and Dreams by David Gordon Duke the Vancouver composer. With the longest movement less than 90 seconds long, and four of them considerably less than one minute , these are miniatures that create an instant sound world , state their case and then leave it to you the listener. They are enigmatic and do take a little longer than usual to emotionally involve the listener as a result.

So all in all, these are all new works, that unless you are very knowledgeable, you will not have heard before, and with such a situation as that, they do take their own time to strike through to the listener, but, that said, they are well – written, in a number of different styles, and as a collection they make an intriguing bunch of works. The playing and recording is of course very clear and effortless from start to finish, as you would only expect, and as such this is a recording to explore further.

Chris Dumigan

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