Bryars: Piano Concerto 'The Solway Canal' (Cappella Amsterdam/ Ralph van Raat) (Naxos: 8.572570)
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A new addition to the British Piano Concerto on Naxos, this is the first major piano recording by contemporary British composer Gavin Bryars. The emotional content, lyricism and direct appeal of Gavin Bryars's music are unique, reflecting a contemporary composer's absorption and transformation of several centuries of musical craftsmanship in order to reflect his, and our, own epoch. Originally written for harpsichord, After Handel's Vesper is a strong illustration of Bryars's post-minimal interests in early music repertoire. Ramble on Cortona, derived from 13th-century music, makes expressive use of the piano's resonant qualities. The highly-coloured almost impressionistic piano concerto, The Solway Canal, was written for Ralph van Raat. Scored for piano, orchestra and choir, it evokes dreamy landscapes.