Album Review

Arvo P?rt “Triodion” [Hyperion]

cujo   9/23/2005   A Library, CD

Arvo P’rt‘s choral works from between 1996 and 2002 exquisitely sung by choral group Polyphony on the budget classical label Hyperion. Well-presented liner notes. His ‘tintinnabulation? style is still dominant in these eight pieces in various languages: English, Russian, Latin… The highlights are tracks 2 and 6, which are stunningly beautiful, 5 and 8 are also recommended. Arvo continues to prove Schoenberg right: there is still plenty of good music to be written in the key of C.
1. Dopo la vittoria(10:00) – As dance-like as Arvo’s ever gonna get. Very Italian madrigal-like.
2. Nunc dimittis(7:33) ‘A setting of the Nunc Dimittis, it is naturally a partner piece to his Magnificat that we have in the library.
3. …which was the son of…(7:30) ? As funny as Arvo’s ever gonna get. A setting of one of those ‘X begat Y begat Z…’ bible texts.
4. I Am the True Vine (10:15) ? A series of notes repeated with rhythmic fluctuation, spread around the voices. Blah.
5. Littlemore Tractus (6:28) – A little help from the organ for this track.
6. Triodion (14:13) ? Sublime setting of three odes from the Orthodox prayer book.
7. My Heart’s in the Highland (9:11) – Setting of a Robert Burns poem, with organ and tenor soloist. Tenor rarely varies from his one note, very critically appreciated work but it drove me batty.
8. Salve Regina (12:13) – More help from the organ for this work that builds to a big climax.

-Cujo, Sept. 2005

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