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George CRUMB
the complete piano music

Philip Mead

Makrokosmos 1
Makrokosmos 2
Five Pieces for Piano
Gnomic Variations
A Little Suite for Christmas

METIER MSV CD92067 [135'30"]

George Crumb is a master of the inside of the piano! He experimented radically in the 6os & 70s but in an accessible and listener-friendly personal style. The first two books of his Makrokosmos (the title a tribute to Bartok) are for solo piano, and for many listeners it will be the timbres and exquisite sounds that seduce and charm. He alludes to Debussy and Bartok and invents strange sounds, halos of resonance, pizzicatos on the strings, inserted materials to produce special effects.

Whereas the Gnomic Variations are based on a theme which alternates plucked and damped notes, Processional is a ten minute structure which relies on normal, conventional piano playing.

This new double CD, which follows Philip Mead's complete Charles Ives, will give a great deal of pleasure. See also George Crumb's extensive discography on Bridge Records and his elegant circular score for The Realm of Morpheus in my review of Volume 4 of the Complete Crumb Edition.

© Peter Grahame Woolf