Pianos in The Kitchen brings together select concert recordings of solo piano works performed at The Kitchen from 1976 through 1983, including works from the 1976 Bösendorfer Festival and the 1983 series of benefit concerts that supported the purchase of a new Steinway Baby Grand piano for the institution. Featured are names familiar to The Kitchen’s history such as Philip Glass, Meredith Monk, Charlemagne Palestine, and Anthony Davis as well as performers/composers Harold Budd and Dennis Russell Davies, who have enjoyed important careers, but are not necessarily associated with The Kitchen’s programming. This CD covers a range of genres, from jazz to classical to new music. All of the recordings document performances in which the piano–the instrument most central to the development of Western music–is played, explored, and extended. There is a notable immediacy and intimacy about each performance in this compilation, stemming perhaps from the nature of live recordings and the strength of the piano as a large organic, vibrant instrument.
For fans of Sviatoslav Richter, it does not much matter if the sound is not all that great and it does not much matter if the repertoire is the same repertoire as always. It does not even matter much if the performances are not the greatest Richter ever recorded. For fans of Sviatoslav Richter, the only thing that matters is that there are new Richter recordings because that all by itself means that they will be some of the greatest performances of the greatest repertoire ever recorded. And this five-disc set of Sonatas by Beethoven, Schubert, and Liszt does not disappoint. With recordings dates from 1961 through 1975 and recording venues all in the USSR and its empire, the sound is hard and harsh. But with repertoire ranging from the last three Beethoven Sonatas through Schubert's last Sonata to Liszt's only Sonata, the music has the supreme masterpieces of the Romantic repertoire. And while there are Richter performances here and there that may arguably exceed these, Richter's performances here are as virtuosic, as expressive, as profound, and as transcendent as any he ever recorded.
This is the second of Brilliant's box sets devoted to Russian recordings from Evgeny Kissin. Labeled as early, these live concert performances from 1984 to 1990 carry us from the day after Kissin turned 13 (Mozart Cto. #12 K. 414) to age 18 (Mozart Cto. #20, K. 466), with most readings clustering in the range of 1985-89. Russians were well aware of the marvel in their midst; the pianist's American breakthrough occurred in 1990 when he debuted at Carnegie Hall's centennial season. No one since Richter, debuting almost thirty years before, had made such a heady entry, and Richter was past fifty when he came here (briefly, since he loathed American capitalism and the pace of life in our big cities).
First recognized as the dance duo behind the club hits "Stakker" (as Humanoid) and "Papua New Guinea," Future Sound of London later became one of the most acclaimed and respected international experimental ambient groups, incorporating elements of techno, classical, jazz, hip-hop, electro, industrial, and dub into expansive, sample-heavy tracks, often exquisitely produced and usually without easy precursor. Notoriously enigmatic and often disdainful of the press, the group's Garry Cobain and Brian Dougans worked their future-is-now aesthetic into a variety of different fields, including film and video, 2- and 3-D computer graphics and animation, the Internet, radio broadcast, and, of course, recorded music…