Magazine article Gramophone

Williamson: Peace Pieces

Magazine article Gramophone

Williamson: Peace Pieces

Article excerpt

Williamson Peace Pieces. Resurgence du feu (Paques 1959). Epitaphs for Edith Sitwell. Little Carols of the Saints. Elegy--JFK. Fantasy on 'This is my Father's World'. Mass of a Medieval Saint Tom Winpenny org Naxos (M) (2) 8 571375/6 (99' * DDD) Played on the organ of the Church of St John the Evangelist, Islington, London

With the exception of the Organ Symphony and the Vision of Christ-Phoenix, organists have shown little enthusiasm for the music of Malcolm Williamson, so Tom Winpenny has the field pretty much to himself. He included both those works on an earlier disc (released on Toccata Classics in 2014), and with this two-CD set for Naxos he ventures into the largely forgotten recesses of the solo organ output to ensure that almost everything Williamson wrote for the instrument is now available on disc.

This music is lucky to have such a conscientious advocate. Winpenny presents it all with clinical technical precision and close attention to textural detail, easily moving between moments of demanding virtuosity (the 'Sortie' from Mass of a Medieval Saint) and almost embarrassing naivety (the meandering Fantasy on 'This is my Father's World'), while flowing easily through Williamson's long swathes of utter harmonic charmlessness. …

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