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Album Review

Berio, Luciano – “Coro ” – [Deutsche Grammophon]

Thurston Hunger   2/13/2006   A Library, CD

Polyglot powerhouse of a work. 40 voices swelling often like
an ocean. At times, I wanted to listen to this while watching
“Beneath the Planet of the Apes” without its sound. Something
about the music here just sneaks up on me and scares the
daylights out of me. The words I don’t hear as much as I feel,
but with lines embedded like “Come and see the blood streets”
this does lead to a feeling of walking around a city after it
has been sacked. Flutes dart like frightened birds, percussion
rumbles like bombs in the distance or it explodes right under
your feet/ears. This could easily fit in on KFJC in a set
with Einsturzende Neubaten and Tetsuo Furudate’s “Othello”
it shows the vitality of classical music, this has a great
sense of exploration and invokes the harsh dynamics that make
noise so thrilling. A tortured and angry work that somehow
still remains oddly beckoning thanks to the intoxicating
swirl of voices, often brimmed with amazing baritone. Nothing
short of a volcano here… -Thurston Hunger

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