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Xenakis, Lopez-Lopez, Pintscher, Druckman & Globokar

Iannis Xenakis - Rebonds
Lopez-Lopez - Calculo secreto
Pintscher - nemeton
Druckman - Reflections on the nature of water
Globokar - Toucher

Johannes Fischer (percussion)

Oehms OC 716

This is a CD to make you question whether percussion is really about hitting things hard. Fisher is a musician of hypersensitive response to sound, immensely subtle in all his playing, even in more extrovert items such as Xenakis' two Rebonds which book-end the disc. He seeks to leave the greate part of the active movement to gravity, the dead weight of the drumsticks, 'to advance into the sound of each of our instruments". The development of percussion playing in recent decades has been phenomenal; I recall from the '70s the composer Benjamin Frankel advising my son (who became singer, bassist and school music teacher) that percussion was the instrument of the future.

Johannes Fischer rings the changes on his instruments, with solos on vibraphone (Lopez-Lopez) and marimba; Druckman's six Reflections on the nature of water suitably wide ranging. Globokar's work requires the player to declaim passages of Brecht about Galileo in French and English whilst playing; a bewildering tour de force.

But the gem of this oehmsclassics debut disc is the quietest and longest, Matthias Pintscher's nemeton (= "magic places where druids held their ceremonies"). It explores "the Utopia of legato", concentrating on the residual sounds after the strike as they "dissipate into a timeless state of silence". This links with our earliest acquaintance with Pintscher's music (Royal Festival Hall, 2005 - "master of pianissimo") before he entered the world of large-scale orchestral commissions.

Delicious and not to be missed.

Peter Grahame Woolf

You can watch Pedro Carneiro playing Rebonds B at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ziQjykdLDVU, which will show you what instruments are being used, information lacking in Fischer's CD notes.