Parma Recordings: February + March Releases

New & Contemporary Classial Label Parma Recordings has posted tracks from its February + March releases on the Navona + Ravello imprints. Check out samples below the cut.

SCATTERING LIGHT, SCATTERING FLOWERS, the third release by composer Marty Regan in the Selected Works for Japanese Instruments series was recorded in Japan, and features large ensemble works for traditional Japanese instruments, including two concertos. Composed for female voice, shakuhachi, and the relatively rare 25-string koto, the title track is based on a deeply poetic text written by Japanese poet Haruka Nakanashi that echoes with references to traditional Japanese noh theater.

The music of Irish composer GrĂ¡inne Mulvey explores the juxtaposition of polar opposites, pitting the real against the synthetic in finely crafted and thought-provoking works. AKANOS, an all-Mulvey album on Navona Records, includes seven of her works: Akanos for orchestra, a contrast of organic growth and jagged intersections; Shifting Colours, a back-and-forth between flute and synthesized flute; Steel-grey splinters, an exploration of unusual piano timbre through extended techniques; Syzygy for cello and tape, presenting acoustic and electronic in both conjunction and opposition; The Seafarer for soprano and tape, a take of mourning and hope; Gift of Freedom for soprano and tape, a celebration and liberation of life; and Soundscape III for flute and tape.

Journeys after…, the debut release on Navona Records by Welsh composer Brian Noyes, features two orchestral works that reference the life and works of John Clare-a Northamptonshire peasant-poet from the early 19th Century. Inspired by Clare’s Journey Out of Essex – a poignant account of his escape from a mental asylum and his 80-mile walk home looking for his imaginary love, Noyes has sought to reflect the poet’s real and illusionary worlds as depicted in his evocative text.

Excerpts from the Bible, text from the Middle Ages, and traditional instrumentation (organ, orchestral, and choral) form the basis of six composers’ inspired works on FOUNDATIONS to create stirring, new contemporary classical music. By connecting to the roots of historical texts and musical conventions – in some cases the foundations of our collective cultures – these pieces present a modern spin on traditional materials, sounds, and forms. FOUNDATIONS illustrates how new gestures and expressions can be inspired by, and created from, the common

THE LYRIC CLARINET, the new release on Ravello Records, showcases a collection of works, originally for voice, which are transcribed, arranged, and performed by international performing and recording artist F. Gerard Errante. Errante selected compositions from German, French, and North and South American composers that illustrate the affinity between the clarinet and the human voice

POLARITIES, an album of new presentations in classical music, expresses the emotions, feelings, and scenes associated with opposites. The works on the album, by four composers, range from a piece for wind ensemble and the Chinese gaohu, to a piano sonata, a chamber work, and works for orchestra. POLARITIES showcases the common focus of polar opposites and points of view in the works of four composers.

THE KEY OF C-SPAN, Vol. 1 is the premiere release of the digital music collections featuring works from PARMA Recordings’ audio catalog which have been used in C-SPAN’s programming.
PARMA and C-SPAN’s collaborative relationship stems back to January 2013, when the two companies teamed up on the C-SPAN series First Ladies: Influence & Image, for which PARMA produced a customized theme song. In May 2013, PARMA signed on as C-SPAN’s music provider, placing content from its audio catalog across the network’s original programming, promotions, and Senate quorum calls.

The Navona Records debut from chamber-jazz group Douglas Detrick’s AnyWhen Ensemble features composer and trumpeter Douglas Detrick’s ten-movement suite, The Bright and Rushing World, commissioned by Chamber Music America. This work, which George Grella called “impressively clear, inventive and compelling,” (Big City Blog, 2.4.14) is not a pastiche of styles, but a thoughtfully-constructed hybrid of music with a unique and personal sensibility inspired by sources as diverse as Duke Ellington, Gil Evans, Benjamin Britten and Igor Stravinsky.

This 2014 reissue of Michael Cunningham’s SONIC FLIGHT showcases six works for orchestra that effectively illustrate the composer’s adeptness at creating compelling large-scale compositions and presenting them through adroit, inspired orchestration techniques. The Violin Concerto is a vigorous, energetic exploration of the instrument’s capabilities, pitting the soloist against an orchestra that seeks to both support and contrast in its accompaniment. Dialogue for Orchestra and Wind is balanced by its partner piece Diaphony for Orchestra and Wind Trio, with both compositions featuring evocative colors and sonorities. Kaleidescope lives up to its name, spinning abstract, disparate musical concepts in order to finally blend them all into a cohesive whole. Read

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