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APERGHIS Georges Petrrohl (2001)
HIDALGO Manuel Cuatro Citas de Juan Goytisolo (1999)
RONCHETTI Lucia Anatra al sal (2000)
BERIO Luciano Sequenza III per voce (1966)
PERAZZANI Paolo All for Company (2002)
BAUCKHOLT Carola Nein allein (2000)

Stradivarius STR 33680
[66 mins]

NEUE VOCALISTEN STUTTGART is a vocal group of variable size which specialises on the cutting edge of new music and was the natural choice to be artists in residence at the recent Spoken Sound festival at Stockholm which focused on the borderland between speech and musical sound, vocal and instrumental.

Of four NVS CDs received, all collectable, this is the one for English-speaking exploreres to go for first.

Aperghis is represented by a dazzling tour de force by six singers, and Angelika Luz gives a virtuoso account of the seminal Berio solo Sequenza written for Cathy Berberian. Ronchetti's Anatra al sal ('everything is theatre') is a brilliant take on Banchieri's madrigal comedies; All for Company is a setting (in English) of a characteristic text by Beckett, and Bauckholt's hilarious piece rings all possible changes of meaning and expression from a few familiar German phrases and words, Ja, aber, OK etc.

J P Hiekel's helpful introduction to this genre is given in several languages and the texts are provided. Also from Stradivarius is a programme which places Sciarrino and Fedele against Gesualdo [STR 33629] and col legno has a double-CD with Josquin and international avant-garde composers including Ferneyhough, Dusapin and Scelsi's Tre canti sacri [col legno WWE 20030].

The precision and sheer musicality of these singers, 'researchers, discoverers, adventurers and idealists' is dazzling, and all followers of contemporary trends should own at least one of their recordings.


© Peter Grahame Woolf