Monday, 22 October 2018

Daniel Kientzy - Musiques Contemporaines Pour Saxophones (1988)

The great avant-garde/modern classical sax master Daniel Kientzy, previously highlighted starring in ensemble works here and here, returns to these pages in an early compilation of pieces for solo saxophone.  Or indeed more than one sax at once, or sax plus electronics - it's all here at its most mind-bending, in one piece each from the seven composers listed on the cover.

If you love solo saxophone doing insane, improbable things, this is the album for you for sure; if you think it might be a bit much to sit through 71 minutes of this stuff, I recommend taking it in stages.  Personal highlights would be the blasting opener, the overture to Aurel Stroe's Eumenides opera (can never resist a Romanian composer) and the closer, Horacio Vaggione's Thema, that sounds like it's being played inside a gigantic cement mixer.  Then enjoy the frenzy of tape effects layered on to Aulodie by François-Bernard Mâche, then the slowly integrating layers of the Stockhausen piece, then the rest will be a breeze.  I promise.