Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Andrea Centazzo, Rain On The Borders: New Hybrid Sounds from the Mitteleuropa Orchestra

Andrea Centazzo the composer? Yes. He has in later years come to develop his music in a composi- tional direction and Rain On the Borders (Ictus 308) is a very good place to sample the orchestral component. The album consists of the title piece conducted by the composer, recorded in 1995, and several shorter works from 1986. Together they give a coherent and musically satisfying overview of some of this work.

"Rain on the Borders" has a minimalist post-Riley-Reichian motor periodicity to the opening section and then something more rhapsodic, yet also rhythmically active towards the end of the second half. Soprano Lia Lantieri and pianist Dennis Biancucci come over well in their solo parts.

The second half of the CD features jazz-tinged solo spots for Roberto Ottaviana, Carlo Actis Dato and Roberto Manuzzi. "Tiare" brings an attractive repeating and developing motif in the orchestra against a pulsating mallet ensemble."Tina Suite" has bold orchestration and some dramatic brass blocks against a pulsating rhythmic foundation.

The four part "Pasosuite" continues to unveil Centazzo's take on minimalism with dynamic malletwork against bold, brassy motif development.There's room for some fleet and out sax work, Mr. Dato sounding quite empassionaed and acrobatic.

The point though is that this is music that has excitement, beauty, contour and irresistible pulse. There is a muscular lyricism at work that is a hallmark of the Centazzo's style of this era.

A very invigorating listen! Recommended.

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