Magazine article Gramophone

Scelsi: 'Complete Flute Music'

Magazine article Gramophone

Scelsi: 'Complete Flute Music'

Article excerpt

Scelsi

'Complete Flute Music' Hyxos (a). Suite (b). Quays. Rucke di Guck (c). Ko-Lho (b). Tetratkys. Krishna e Rada (d) Claudia Giottoli fl/picc/afl (c) Paolo Puliti ob (b) Natalia Benedetti cl (d) Raffaele D'Aniello pf (a) Leonardo Ramadori perc Brilliant (B) 95039 (7V * DDD)

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The Scelsi conundrum is fully on display in this brightly recorded compilation of compositions involving the flute. The good news is that the most substantial item, the 24-minute Tetratkys (1959), is an excellent example of Scelsi's ability to work more expansively and allusively than in the kind of constrained yet intensely dramatic rhetoric heard here in Ko-Lho (1976) for flute and clarinet.

In Ko-Lho the two instruments seem to be struggling to achieve a modicum of independence while limiting their materials to the most basic elements of interval and rhythm. In Tetratkys the solo flute inhabits more rhapsodic, even Romantic regions especially in the last of its four sections. Moreover, Scelsi almost entirely avoids that tendency to ramble in quasi-improvisatory style that appears in several of the disc's shorter pieces, such as Hyxos for flute, gongs and cowbells, where the vibrant punctuations of the percussion make the modal monodies they interrupt seem relatively bland. …

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