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  Chesky -
  David Chesky: Urban Concertos - Gergov
  David Chesky: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, Concerto for Orchestra, Concerto for Bassoon and Orchestra

Love Derwinger (piano)
Martin Kuuskmann (bassoon)
Symphony Orchestra of the Norrlands Opera
Rossen Gergov (conductor)
Track listing:
  Classical - Orchestral
Recording type:
Recording info:

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Reviews: 2

Review by MikeH4 March 14, 2007 (4 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
I do not quite agree with Edvin's assessment of this disc.

I concur with Andrew Quint in his The Absolute Sound review of this disc that Chesky is totally a unique composer and one of America’s best.

His voice does not come out of any compositional school that I know of. Druckman, Albert, Rouse use colors and textures as their compositional building blocks, the catalyst on the other hand for Chesky's compositions are rhythms derived from urban areas such as jazz and funk. He takes these pop motifs and molds them into his own sophisticated sound.

If you like or dislike the music that is another story, but Chesky has his own voice, and a sophisticated one as well.

I prefer this SACD better than the previous AREA 31. I feel his ideas are becoming more focused into this so called urban sound.

But I do agree that if you really want to hear what an orchestra should sound like on a recording this disc will demonstrate it beyond reproach.

Michael Haldor

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Review by Edvin January 31, 2007
Performance:   Sonics:
Plenty of excitement here. David Chesky´s music is extrovert, rhytmically alive and sometimes evocative. Three concertos all following the same formula. A toccata like first movement, a slow fantasy and a more free rambling finale. Chesky calls this "urban music" and himself being a New Yorker playing African drums in Central Park during weekends he simply wants to write down what he hears from a city that never sleeps.

I am reminded of other American composers, Stephen Paulus, Jacob Druckman, Stephen Albert...The forward motion, the jazz influences without becoming Gershwin. But there are differences as well and those are more important as they separate three really good composers from one who is enjoying muisc and making the most out of his limited talent.

The Concerto for Orchestra starts with Chesky clearing his throat and thus dispensing with both 12-tone music and minimalism. This short excercise ends with the tune Jingle Bells, for some strange reason.The music starts off and Chesky trademarks are soon to be heard. He quotes the Bartok Concerto for Orchestra and Stravinsky´s Rite of Spring. A lot of energy, busy music. The slow movement has some flirtations with Ives Central Park in the Dark, the foggy chords. Bolero makes a brief appearence somewhere.

The Bassoon concerto and again we hear The Rite of Spring. A bit tiresome by now. In the middle of the slow movement I hear something that could pass for a passacaglia, based on Sunshine of Your Love by Cream, from their album Disraeli Gears.

In both the Piano concerto and the Bassoon concerto we have a lot of hand clapping in the finales. Not my cup of tea at all. On the positive side I must mention all the energy and raw emotion. I really think David Chesky loves music, but the range is a bit too limited. Big city-music has been written before and my favorite piece is Copland´s Music For a Great City. That music pulsates and vibrates.

Play this SACD loud and it generates a lot of excitement, it is a high energy of the Red Bull kind. I have read the reviews by Raffells and Chris concerning a previous SACD with concertos by Chesky. We could have been listening to the same pieces.

The real heroes of this disc is the orchestra. A smallish orchestra in the north of Sweden playing so idiomatically and making the music swing. I am impressed indeed. Also the soloists are very good. The sound is spectacular and if you are even the slightest interested in hearing an orchestra in a natural environment you will get this SACD as it is cought to, almost, perfection. The rears are very discreet.

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