Having earned his composing stripes after the 1960s, John Adams had the pioneering work of Steve Reich, Philip Glass, and Terry Riley close at hand as he ventured into his trade. And, while minimalism's historical continuum helps place Adams, he used Reich, Glass, and Riley (among others) only as a starting point. And here's proof: a 10-CD retrospective of nearly all Adams's recorded compositions on Nonesuch Records, the label that also issued Steve Reich 1965-1995 and Kronos Quartet: 25 Years. Adams's Harmonium, a choral work of startling energy and effervescence, appears here in a new recording, as do distillations of both The Death of Klinghoffer and Nixon in China, two path-clearing operas.
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. George Adams and Don Pullen knock it out of the park on this one – finding great company in each other's presence, and really moving things forward in the process! The set begins with a long track titled "Mingus Metamorphosis", and that really sums up the spirit of the record – an 80s reworking of all the ideas that the players had learned from Mingus, but with an individual, personal sense that's all their own – and very different than some of the more standard modes of the Mingus Dynasty group that continued the legacy in a more direct manner. Adams is bold one minute, lyrical the next – and plays both tenor and flute – alongside Pullen on piano, Cameron Brown on bass, and Dannie Richmond on drums.